Magistrate Phil Sammons apologizes publicly for comments about tourism director: ‘I intended no disrespect’

Published 2:12 pm Thursday, September 12, 2019

Boyle County Magistrate Phil Sammons has submitted a letter to the editor apologizing for comments he made about tourism director Jennifer Kirchner at Tuesday’s fiscal court meeting.

“I intended no disrespect to Ms. Kirchner however, my words were hurtful and for this I want to apologize and to the entire community, as I made these feelings known to Ms. Kirchner,” Sammons wrote in the letter.

The full text of his letter, which will also be published on the Friday opinion page of The Advocate-Messenger, follows:

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“This is an open letter to the citizens of Boyle County. My name is Phil Sammons and I am the magistrate of the third district a position I have proudly held for over 20 years. It has been my honor to serve my constituents and all Boyle County. I have waited until this time to address the community in order for all concerned parties to have their say, understanding it’s always better to act on logic and not emotion.

“At the time of my comments at the fiscal court meeting, I intended no disrespect to Ms. Kirchner however, my words were hurtful and for this I want to apologize to the entire community as I made these feelings known to Ms. Kirchner, and grateful she accepted that apology.

“As a proud father of a daughter who was also a Centre graduate and two sons who are attorneys for this commonwealth, and a grandfather of three boys and two girls, I would never intend to do anything that would be represented as disrespectful to a female, and tried to show that example in the way I’ve loved and treated their mother and grandmother in our 55 years of marriage.

“As a representative of this community, I understand my actions have caused embarrassment and for this I offer my apology, not only to the community but to the fiscal court as well. I look forward to serving this community in the future.”

Yesterday, Danville Mayor Mike Perros apologized for his role in the incident and Boyle County Judge-Executive Howard Hunt issued a statement during a press conference condemning what had happened. Kirchner told The Advocate-Messenger yesterday that Sammons had called her twice to apologize. Audio of the Tuesday incident is available here.