Reporting Liz Collin
NEW RICHMOND, Wis. (WCCO) – A New Richmond, Wis. Mayor is the recent subject of scrutiny after he was caught in a city building in the middle of the night on April 12, moaning and giggling with a woman. Police believe the two had been drinking.
A New Richmond police officer working in the same building heard giggling from the civic center basement inside City Hall. The cop said he then spotted Mayor Fred Horne’s car in his designated spot. The officer walked down the stairs and heard moaning in a changing room near an exercise room.
When the officer asked if everything was ok, he said Horne winked at him and said it was.
In a police recording made public, Horne had an awkward conversation with Officer Timothy Kufus, the officer who found him. Here is a part of that exchange:
Kufus: “You’re putting us in a real weird spot because you’re the mayor. Everyone tells me that you’re basically our boss.”
Horne: “Yup, and I apologize for putting you in this tough spot.”
Kufus: “I’m just wondering what you’re doing down here?”
Horne: “Are you saying I don’t have a right to be here?”
Kufus: “No, absolutely not.”
Kufus: “And then secondly, I would hope you don’t drive home.”
Horne: “I… I already plan to walk home.”
Police think Mayor Horne had been drinking. They smelled alcohol and said his eyes were red and glossy.
Julie Wig lives in New Richmond and said she believes the major should have better judgment.
“That should be left at home in the privacy of your own home,” she said.
Horne didn’t answer the door when WCCO-TV stopped by his home Friday night. A city spokesperson said he hasn’t been in all week. The spokesperson said his absence has nothing to do with the incident.
Police also said Mayor Horne didn’t commit a crime and the case is considered closed. No complaints have been raised about the mayor in any city council meeting since the incident.