Damien Gilliams, Pamela Parris Facing Additional Sunshine Law Complaints

Damien Gilliams and Pamela Parris
Damien Gilliams and Pamela Parris

Michael Barfield, an open government advocate, said Tuesday that he will be filing an amended complaint to address additional Sunshine Law violations by Sebastian City Council members Damien Gilliams and Pamela Parris.

“We’ve also learned about additional violations, and we will be filing an amended complaint to address those issues very soon,” Barfield told Sebastian Daily.

Barfield is currently suing Gilliams and Parris in a lawsuit that also names the City of Sebastian as a defendant over Sunshine Law violations during the infamous April 22nd meeting.

Gilliams still believes that nothing illegal occurred during the meeting, although criminal charges were filed against him and Parris. The meeting was also deemed illegal by the State Attorney’s Office.

Sebastian residents believe the meeting was nothing more than a coup by Damien Gilliams, Pamela Parris, and Charles Mauti to take over the City of Sebastian.

There were several phone calls and text messages between the three council members leading up to the April 22nd meeting. Then, on April 22nd, when the meeting was already canceled, Gilliams allegedly told Mauti and Parris to have their own meeting. There were phone calls and text messages on the same day from Gilliams to Mauti and Parris. Mauti told the State Attorney’s Office that Gilliams was “pushy” to have the meeting.

Recently, Gilliams attempted to have the Sunshine Law case against him, and Parris dropped, citing that the Court already handled it.

“They now claim that the Court already issued an injunction and nothing else needs to be done. We disagree, and our response points out that, subsequent to the entry of the initial injunction, both Gilliams and Parris have challenged whether their actions violated the Sunshine Law,” Barfield told Sebastian Daily.

Last week, during a special meeting requested by Mayor Ed Dodd to address a facial mask resolution, the city council voted 4-1 to ask Florida Governor Ron DeSantis to remove Gilliams and Parris from public office.

Gilliams and Parris were arrested last month after the State Attorney’s Office filed criminal charges after they allegedly violated the Sunshine Law and committed perjury. They have a court hearing scheduled later this month.

Gilliams is now requesting a meeting for Tuesday night to talk about the annexation, which legal experts believe puts the City in jeopardy to face another lawsuit since the case is still in litigation.

Tuesday night’s special meeting is set for 5:00 p.m. at City Hall.

There is also a regular City Council meeting scheduled for Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. at City Hall.

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About Andy Hodges
Andy Hodges was born in Annapolis, Maryland and raised in Jupiter, Florida. Andy has been a radio & TV personality since the 1980s. He has worked for WLIZ, WFLX-FOX 29, WIRK, WIXI, WKSY, WRMF, and WJNO to name a few. After spending 7 years in Atlanta, Georgia during the 1990s, Andy returned to Florida and settled in the small town of Sebastian in 2000. In 2005, he returned to the broadcasting news sector and eventually joined our news team in 2016 as editor in chief. Andy's family has lived in Sebastian for more than 45 years.