HOUSTON – A tense moment between KPRC 2 Investigates’ Amy Davis and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner over the city’s water billing and infrastructure problems has gone viral.
We’ve gotten a lot of comments and questions about what Mayor Turner was referring to in his comments on Nov. 15.
Mayor Sylvester Turner: You are very rude and you’re not professional. You have intruded on this press conference on something else. And you have no interest in covering what we’re covering today. And I am going to call your GM and express strong dissatisfaction. There comes a point when even reporters should be bound by a code of professionalism. So, I will not talk with you today.
Amy Davis: Forever? I asked when. You name the time.
Mayor Sylvester Turner: I told you several years ago. That hasn’t changed because your lack of professionalism has not changed.
So here’s the backstory to the mayor’s response about telling Amy he was done with her “several years ago.”
You may remember Amy Davis’ 2016 investigation into the city’s Safe Clear contract with a tow truck company and owner who was charged with organized criminal activity and pleaded guilty to theft.
Mayor Turner was not in office when the contract was awarded, but the owner, Richard Gonzalez donated $10,000 to Turners’ campaign while running for Mayor. Turner was in office when Gonzalez was arrested and charged with stealing vehicles from drivers who were stranded on Houston freeways and charging thousands of dollars to get their cars back.
Campaign Finance Reports showed Gonzalez donated more than $35,000 to local leaders. After Gonzalez pleaded guilty, we asked them if they gave up the money.
Amy Davis asked to interview Mayor Turner, who received $10,000 from Gonzalez, to ask him the same question.
She also wanted to know why the Mayor had not canceled Gonzalez’s lucrative city contract three weeks after his arrest.
After not getting a response, Amy went to the State of the City address, waited for the program to end, and approached the mayor with the question while on Facebook Live.
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