Former Indian Rocks Beach supervisor says he was just reacting to mean-spirited prodding from bosses

Pinellas County

INDIAN ROCKS BEACH, Fla. (WFLA) – Errol Gray is accused of beating up the Indian Rocks Beach Public Services Director, hitting an assistant and threatening to drive a truck into city hall.

Now, the former solid waste supervisor is telling his side of the story.

He’s out of a job and facing criminal charges, but Gray and his attorney, John Trevena, insist he only reacted to mean-spirited prodding from his bosses.

The way Gray explains it, he got singled out for discipline after refusing to direct his crew to pick up trash strewn about near a condo Dumpster.

“I disobey a directive from the General Manager, and I quote, ‘pick that s*** up or resign,'” Gray said.

The issue came to a head last week when Gray met with the city’s public services director, Dean Scharmen.

“I let Dean Scharmen know that I’m not taking a directive such, from the city manager and I’m not taking one either from him in such a manner,” he said.

In Gray’s termination letter, City Manager Gregg Mims wrote, “you began a vicious physical assault on him causing injuries serious enough that he had to be transported the hospital.”

Attorney John Trevena wouldn’t allow Gray to comment, saying he wants to know if there is a video of the incident.

He says Gray has no prior criminal history and only minor traffic incidents at work.

“If you’re gonna talk like that to somebody, people are gonna react,” Trevena said.

From the termination letter, regarding an assistant: “you battered her causing injuries requiring medical treatment.”

Gray responded, “When she felt that I was going to do harm, she kicked at me.  She kicked at me. I catch her leg. I look her in the eyes. Release her leg, did her no harm,” he said.

Again, from the letter, regarding a sheriff report, Gray threatened to run into women standing near the city hall front door “violently revving its engine and circling city hall.”

“The most that he is guilty of would be a misdemeanor battery at most and maybe a traffic violation for revving the engine,” said attorney, John Trevena.

As deputies arrested Gray, he made a remark about ramming the truck into the city manager’s office.

“Yes, I believe I mentioned it. I believe I mentioned it,” admitted Gray.

“It was a flippant remark after being triggered by abusive supervisors who showed him no respect,” Trevena said.

Gray had worked for the City of Indian Rocks Beach for 10 years.

His attorney believes there is much more to come out of this case and thinks Gray is being wrongfully accused.

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