Nude Photos Of Houston
BC Mayor Controversy

By Ken Alexander
Houston Today Newspaper

Controversy is swirling in Houston as a nude photographs of Mayor Sharon Smith are popping up on computers throughout the community and beyond.
The photographs were taken by her husband in the mayor's office in Town Hall. They show Smith and the mayor's "ceremonial chain of office.
The pictures were taken from Smith's home computer and the mayor says the theft is currently being investigated by the Houston, RCMP.
Houston RCMP Sgt. Dave Fenson says the matter is under investigation and is"progressing well."
Sgt. Fenson says there are a couple of suspects, and he expects the matter will be resolved in several weeks. He also adds that the theft was not a break and enter.
Smith is miffed her personal photographs were stolen and then distributed through email. However, she is not apologizing for posing in the nude.
In a letter to Houston Today (see page 5), Smith states: "The personal property is private pictures of myself, which were for my husband and myself only and not for anyone else's benefit or for public distribution."
However, former Houston councilor Nipper Kettle thinks Mayor Smith has shown disrespect to her office and should step down until the issue is cleared up.
He first heard about the photographs when he received a letter. Nov.. 21, stating the images were circulating in the community. Since then, he has received an email showing one of the pictures; it came from out-of-town.
Kettle says he doesn't care about the mayor posing nude for her husband as that is "their personal business."
However, he is displeased Smith posed with the "chain of office" around her neck and the photos were taken in the mayor's office.
"That chain is something the mayor should be wearing when she is doing official municipal business," Kettle says, adding he also feels it was wrong to take the pictures in the mayor's office.
"In my opinion, it shows total disrespect for the people she represents and the office she holds, It's kind of like slapping all of the voters in the face."
Mayor Smith disagrees.
"It was a private photo for my husband, taken by my husband, and there was no disgrace or anything to with the position of mayor. In actuality, it was a proud moment for my husband and that's what it was considered and there is no degradation or anything else."
Even if there is a outcry from the community, Smith says she is not stepping down.
"There is nothing wrong with what I have done. It is not immoral; it is not unethical; it is not illegal; and it has nothing to do with my position of mayor and capability of being leader of this community.
"The voters voted loudly and clearly for me and, because there are a few individuals who have opposed my position, that's their problem."
Smith says she has had a lot of support from people in the community and has been told to hold her head high. "Those who are against me will always be against me."
The mayor adds council has been supportive.
When contacted, some councilors chose not to comment.
Noting the pictures were a private matter between the mayor and her husband and the photos were stolen from their home, Coun. Nick Powell says he feels sorry about what has happened to Smith.
"What people do in their own private lives is that - it's private. It's unfortunate that it's got out this was and I'm sure in hindsight people, and the mayor herself, would think things should have been done differently but you just don't expect these sort of things to be taken from you and used in a not very respectful manner."
Coun. Bonny Hawley says she didn't think she would have to, and doesn't want to deal with this issue.
"I didn't think this would be part of my municipal experience. I just want to do the business of the people and this is not the kind of think I want to think about."
First published 12-3-3
Statement From Houston Mayor Sharon Smith
Letters to the editor
Houston Today Newspaper
Wednesday December 3, 2003
It has come to my attention that personal property belonging to my husband and myself has been stolen from out home and is currently being circulated around the community.
The personal property is private pictures of myself, where were for my husband and myself ONLY and not for anyone else's benefit or for public distribution.
They were taken from our home without permission and we are being widely circulated.
This is not only an invasion of our privacy, but is also a criminal offense, which is being investigated by the Houston RCMP.
While I appreciate the words of support and encouragement that I have received from many members of the community. I am disheartened and hurt by those few who seem to be taking the pleasure and enjoyment from this situation.
These photographs have been stolen from our home and I consider this a matter of theft in the same way i would consider the theft of jewelry of anything else. I am very disappointed that circulation of these stolen pictures seems to be acceptable and tolerated by some.
My privacy has been violated in every sense. These photos are private property belonging to my husband and me. I am very hurt and embarrassed.
Our community is known for its tolerance, decency and respect for the law. I have served our community for a number of years as a volunteer, a Councillor and currently as your Mayor. I consider it a privilege to serve as your Mayor, and have worked hard, and will continue to work hard for our community.
I have never expected anything in return from our community during my community service, but i am asking now for your respect, support and assistance.
I respectfully request that anyone knowing who is responsible for this theft to forward any information they have to the RCMP.
I would also like to remind people that knowingly being in possession of stolen property is a criminal offense.
Finally, I ask that anyone who may have a copy or copies of any photos of me in print, on CD, or on their computer to delete, destroy or deliver them to the RCMP.
Thank you,
Sharon Smith





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