Wayne president staying, despite calls for resignation after her husband killed neighbor's dog
Wayne Village President Eileen Phipps said she is not resigning though residents are calling for her to step down after her husband shot and killed her neighbor's dog.
"There is no involvement by the (Wayne) police department nor the village board," Phipps said in an interview Wednesday. "I don't understand how I could possibly be interfering with the investigation that is being conducted."
On Wednesday, Kane County Sheriff Ron Hain said his investigators plan to meet with Kane County prosecutors Thursday to review the case.
Phipps' husband, Hal, has been accused by a neighbor of shooting the neighbor's dog, Ludwig, to death on Aug. 10. According to the sheriff's office, Hal Phipps told deputies that two dogs, including Ludwig, were aggressively blocking a path from his boat launch area on the Fox River to his home. In July, Hal Phipps accused one of the dogs of biting him, according to an ordinance violation ticket.
The neighbor, Joe Petit, said his friend had taken Ludwig and Ludwig's brother to swim in the Fox River. The dogs were not on the Phippses' property, Petit said.
Petit also denies that either of the dogs ever bit Hal Phipps.
On Tuesday night, several residents told Phipps and the village board they wanted her to resign. Several suggested she at least step aside temporarily while the matter is being investigated.
More than two dozen residents attended the board meeting via telephone.
"Mr. Phipps shot a gun within inches, from the video it appears, toward a human," resident Ron Bowers told the board. "She should be stepping down, by sheer connection."
Unidentified people shouted, "Peace for Ludwig!" "Justice for Ludwig!" and "Step down, Eileen!"
Some continued to shout after the public comment portion of the meeting had ended, and the board was conducting its regular business.
At the beginning of the meeting, Trustee Pete Connolly read a statement that Wayne police handed the case over to the sheriff's office when they learned it involved the president's husband and that the village board is not involved.
"And it will not be decided by social media," Connolly said, referring to discussions on Facebook pages.
Phipps did not address the matter at the meeting.
On Wednesday, Phipps said she was sorry for the loss of Petit's dog but maintained that his dogs previously attacked her husband and landscaping workers.
"I pray people do the decent thing and wait for the investigation to be concluded and information released," Phipps said. "Then people will know the truth."