/  05.30.2022

A Virginia councilmember laid it all on the table during a meeting that ended in the abrupt termination of Portsmouth City Manager April Jones.

During the Tuesday (May 24) evening meeting, councilmember Lisa Lucas-Burke accused the “male-dominated council” of belittling women in positions of power. She also claims that she was blindsided by the termination.

“You lied in my face,” she told fellow councilmember Paul Battle who backed the motion to fire Jones. “And I want you to lie to these people, to say that you didn’t say that.”

Lucas-Burke says that Battle originally expressed support of Jones in the role as city manager and even went as far to say that she went above and beyond in the position. However, during the meeting when he backed the motion to fire Jones made by councilmember Mark Whitaker, Lucas-Burke realized that she had been left in the dark the entire time.

“I’m pissed as a motherfucker,” Lucas-Burke expressed. “I know what’s going on…I’m sick of it!”

The councilmember also accused the council of letting Jones go because of the dirt she had on them.

“She [Jones] got a lot on this council, and that’s why they wanna get rid of her!” she claimed while on the verge of tears.

At one point the meeting got so heated that Portsmouth Mayor Shannon Glover had to call a recess. While Vice Mayor De’Andre was among the people who backed the motion to fire Jones, Glover was against the termination and called the move a “miscarriage of justice.”

She instead spoke highly of Jones during her time as city manager and took a moment to praise the long hours she had put in to uplift the youth of the community.

Throughout it all, Jones continues to remain positive.

“It is what it is,” she said. “I’ll be fine.”


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