Scottsdale mayor under fire for refusing moment of silence - WNEM TV 5

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Scottsdale mayor under fire for refusing moment of silence

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Scottsdale Mayor W.J. "Jim" Lane Scottsdale Mayor W.J. "Jim" Lane
SCOTTSDALE, AZ (CBS5) -

An impromptu tribute to a fallen officer has turned into an all-out controversy.

A citizen requested a moment of silence to remember Phoenix Police Detective John Hobbs at Tuesday night's Scottsdale City Council meeting.

But Mayor W.J. "Jim" Lane denied the request.

The incident took place as Scottsdale resident Mike Aloisi was addressing the mayor and council during the "public comment" portion of the meeting.

Aloisi said, "I'd like permission, mayor and city council, to have one minute of silence for a fallen police officer in Phoenix."

Lane replied, "I'm sorry Michael - please just continue with your statement."

"Is that a no?" asked Aloisi.

"That's a no for you, for right now," the mayor said.

Hobbs was shot and killed Monday, during a shootout with a wanted fugitive.

Jim Hill is president of the Police Officers of Scottsdale Association, and was at Tuesday night's meeting.

"It was a disgraceful representation of the citizens of Scottsdale," said Hill. "To have this happen in our city, and for him to be the representation that shows the world that this our face - it's disgraceful, disgusting, insulting - all of those words."

Lane told CBS 5 News that he never intended to offend anyone.

The mayor said there are strict guidelines that need to be followed during the public comment portion of their city council meetings, and Aloisi's request caught him off guard.

The mayor admitted that he made a mistake by not having a moment of silence to start the meeting.

"Frankly, if there's a fall down here that I would take responsibility for, it's that it should have been on the program at the beginning," said Lane. "We had an invocation at the beginning and that's where it should have been. There was a mistake there."

"What is the right time?" asked Hill. "It wasn't the right time for Detective Hobbs to get shot either. I think the least the mayor owed him was a minute."

The mayor said he has long been a big supporter of the law enforcement community, and regrets all the attention the incident has created.

The mayor and council did have a moment of silence at the end of the meeting. 

Here's the mayor's statement regarding the incident:

"First, let me apologize.

"As public servants, we are deeply saddened by the loss of Detective Hobbs and grieve along with his family, friends and fellow police officers.

"I was caught off-guard by this citizen's request for a moment of silence during his public comment. It wasn't appropriate to turn over the City Council agenda to an individual during the public comment portion of the meeting, but I see why people are interpreting this as a sign of disrespect.

"No disrespect was intended.

"It is our policy to acknowledge and express our thoughts about these matters at the beginning of the meeting and I take personal responsibility for that omission.

"We did observe a moment of silence for Detective Hobbs as a Council item at the end of the meeting."

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