Signatures filed to force recall vote of embattled Pacific mayor

PACIFIC, Wash. -- Just days after getting the go-ahead from the state Supreme Court, opponents of Pacific Mayor Cy Sun have turned in what they hope are enough signatures to force a recall vote for the embattled mayor.

The Committee to recall Cy Sun turned in 556 signatures Monday morning at the King County Elections office. If 425 valid signatures are verified, Pacific could hold a special election in late June or early July.

"We are proud of the people of pacific for what they've done," said recall supporter Don Thomsen.

Sun has been at odds with his own city council from the day he took office in 2012, after winning a write-in campaign in which he vowed to clean out what he called "corruption" at City Hall.

Five of the city's eight department heads either quit or were fired in the following days, and Sun even went to the lengths of placing a padlock on the door to the city clerk's office as chaos and confusion reigned in city government.

Last week the state Supreme Court unanimously ruled that Sun's alleged actions may constitute a violation of his oath of office.

The allegations against Sun are that he directed police officers to operate as his own personal police force by ordering them to conduct a criminal investigation into the identity of those who wrote a negative pamphlet about his Oregon property, and that he jeopardized the city's liability insurance coverage by not filling vacant department head positions.

"If the voters believe these allegations to be true, the allegations show that Sun exercised his discretion in a manifestly unreasonable manner," a trial court ruled, and the Supreme Court justices agreed.

Sun's attorney, Tyler Firkins, argued that the mayor has simply been trying to clean up the city and has done nothing wrong.

"The judge disagreed with our position so we're going to take a look at what we're going to do next but the mayor is going to continue in his efforts to reform the city," he said.

Sun is also facing a civil lawsuit filed by the city's former police chief and four officers fired or forced out by the mayor.

Tracey Apata, who helped coordinate the recall campaign, said Monday marked a big milestone in their effort to oust Mayor Sun.

"We need to get back to hiring and putting the police department put back together, putting city hall back together," she said.