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Johns Creek man files assault charge against city manager

Alleges Kachmar became verbally abusive, poked him in chest

John Kachmar (click for larger version)
October 15, 2013
JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Johns Creek City Manager John Kachmar got into a loud, and witnesses say, abusive argument with a woman who had spoken earlier during the public comment portion of the Oct. 7 City Council meeting and is now being investigated by the Johns Creek Police Department for an assault charge (poking a finger in another man's chest) in an altercation stemming from the same incident.

The incident began in the parking lot around 9:30 p.m. where people had congregated after the council meeting.

That's when witnesses say Kachmar came out of the building and approached Christine Johnson. She had complained at public comment that she was not able to get any information from the city about the proposed traffic roundabout on Sergeant Road.

Kachmar began challenging her for comments about the lack of response from the city.

Then he said, "You are a liar," and walked away.

As he left, Johns Creek resident Gerald Bush said he thought that was inappropriate and yelled an offensive remark as Kachmar walked away. This angered Kachmar, and he turned back to confront Bush.

"I turned around and we got in each other's faces," Kachmar said later.

Kachmar admitted he then called Bush some offensive names.

Bush alleges Kachmar then said he would have him arrested. Kachmar said he thought Bush was going to hit him.

"He had his fists clenched. I said, 'Go ahead, hit me, because I guarantee you will spend the night in jail with Benny the Butt—," Kachmar said.

Kachmar admitted he made an allusion to Bush being raped in jail.

"Yes, I said it. I probably shouldn't have, but I was angry too, and I didn't want to be intimidated by some guy," Kachmar said. "Then I just walked way. It just wasn't worth my time or anybody else's. "

Kachmar said he never threatened to have Bush arrested, only that if Bush hit him he would be arrested.

Kachmar admitted to calling Johnson "a liar" in the parking lot for her remarks during the council meeting. He said he was angry when he then unleashed an abusive tirade moments later on Bush.

Bush also admitted calling Kachmar an offensive name when Kachmar turned to walk away from Johnson.

Kachmar stood "with his nose in the face" of Bush, according to one witness. After his initial outburst, witnesses say Bush did not respond further to Kachmar's raunchy expletives, which included the likelihood of anal rape (in explicitly crude language) if he (Kachmar) had Bush arrested.

Now Kachmar says this is all politically motivated because he has been called as a witness against Mayor Mike Bodker as part of the mayor's investigation. He said Johnson and Bush are blowing this out of proportion because they are Bodker supporters.

Bush said he intervened because he thought Kachmar was being abusive. He denied being a political tool of anyone.

"I don't know who I am going to vote for," Bush said.

Councilman Brad Raffensperger was a witness to the entire event, but he would not say much about it. Instead, he wanted to see what the police report discovered. Asked if council held city personnel to a standard of conduct, Raffensperger replied, that they were "a high standard of conduct."

When Raffensperger was asked by a reporter how Kachmar's conduct compared to that standard, he just turned and walked away.

David Kornbluh, a member of the Johns Creek Community Association Board and frequent attendee at council meetings, was one of the witnesses in the parking lot. He had stayed to see what Johnson's concerns were about the Sergeant Road roundabout.

"I saw [Kachmar] walk up to [Johnson] and stand for a few moments and hurl insults at her – and in effect called her a liar for making comments that were untrue," Kornbluh said. "I heard what she said and found nothing untrue in what she said, although they did not cast city staff in a favorable light."

Then he saw Kachmar come back and approach Bush. Then there was a lot of puffing up of chests, and noses within an inch of each other.

"For the city manager to come out and take issue with what a citizen said in public comment is unacceptable in my mind," Kornbluh said. "[Kachmar] stood in our little circle while we were talking, and he began saying she should not have said such lies or whatever."

Johnson said she never said the city did not respond to her requests about the project. Her complaint was they never provided any of the information she sought. Asked if she felt intimidated by his comments, she said she was "frightened and intimidated."

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Tags: Community & Outreach, Government & News & Crime

  1. report print email
    Oh poor dear
    October 15, 2013 | 05:57 PM

    All of them Bodker supporters. Much ado about nothing.

    How about Bodker cooperating with the investigation instead of trying to load his guilt off on other.

    I've had enough of Bodker and Stewart. Trying to actso righteous, whenthey are not.

    Johns Creek
  2. report print email
    Earth to Mars
    October 15, 2013 | 06:44 PM


    Wow, are you in deep!

    John Kachmar is currently accused of assaulting a citizen after a council meeting. He has denied nothing in the police report that I know of. Facts are that after the meeting he approached and initiated the argument with the woman who spoke that night, calling her a liar. He then argues with a man defending her calling him a p**sy, c**k sucker and a****le. He then says "do you know who you are f***ing with, you are going to enjoy getting b*t f***ed."

    The one begging to deflect attention away from his ACTIONS is Mr. Kachmar who somehow beleives Mike Bodker is responsible for his words and actions!

    Some background on John Kachmar--in 2000 he faced a TRIAL for assaulting a 14 year old boy while city manager in Beaufort, SC. No one disputes he grabbed the boy by the neck, leaving visbile marks and told him to shut up. (This was over a dispute at a movie theatre-while watching Battlefield Earth--shouldn't watching that movie alone be a crime)!!

    Anyway, he has a female planning commission member resign over his bullying tactics in 2000. He is convicted of speeding and driving a city vehicle on a suspended license as well as not paying his income taxes. Council in SC also complains that he withheld info from them and ultimately they vote 11-0 to lket him "resign" in disgrace.

    But, yes, it is all about the Mayor :)

    Randall, the "lap dog" Johnson said he could not "sweep under the rug" RUMORS of ethical lapses by the Mayor. So Randall, I have four ethics violations myslef, Johnson leads the charge for his gal Bev against the mayor months before the election.

    Now Randall is in a pickle. He, Bev and John all hate Mike. Whayt to do? I guess, sweep under the rug John's UNDISPUTED ACTIONS AND RECORD and convicne everyone that everything is the Mayor's fault. Funny, I though everything was George Bush's fault!

    Oh well, keep telling yourself that there is nothing to see here--just ignore our little hypocracy.

    Earth to Mars!
    Johns Creek
  3. report print email
    Apples to Apples
    October 15, 2013 | 07:36 PM

    There is a distinct difference between the investigation of Mr. Kachmar and Mayor Bodker.

    In the case of Mr. Kachmar the name of the accuser is publicly known. The accusations are publicly known. The investigation is focused on the actual time frame of the incident and those involved.

    In the case of Mayor Bodker the name of the accuser(s) is not known. The accusation(s)are not known. The focus of the investigation covers 7 years and many who are not involved.

    Mr. Kachmar is given the privilege of the law. Mr. Bodker is not.

    Rhonda Wilson
    Johns Creek
  4. report print email
    October 15, 2013 | 10:00 PM

    Disgusting, Kachmar should be fired!

  5. report print email
    SB of Roswell
    October 15, 2013 | 10:12 PM

    SB you don't even live in our city. I think you should be concerned about your land locked city.

    Johns Creek
  6. report print email
    Mars doesn't belong on earth
    October 15, 2013 | 10:52 PM

    Funny. The council led by Kachmar has to "try" to find things on Bidker while wasting the taxpayers money and doesn't get any due process on someone who doesn't have ANY history and kachmar gets his allegation "swept" under the rug, gets what the council defines as "due process", spends over 4 months and more than $50,000 and the blame is placed on Bodker supporters? Since when did the people who believe in the person who has done an outstanding job in this city become responsible for the inexcusable language out of Kachmars mouth?

    Take ownership for your potty mouth and your past and move on Kachmar.

    As for Johnson, the only thing I saw swept under a rug was Aladdin since we are talking about childish performances.

    Early voting already started and we need to seriously take into consideration who we are electing to run Johns Creek.

    Johns Creek
  7. report print email
    October 16, 2013 | 09:54 AM

    Stay classy Johns Creek

    S Lee Guy
  8. report print email
    Thank you Hatcher
    October 17, 2013 | 09:02 AM

    This is the most responsible news story I have read yet about this unfortunate and unacceptable incident caused by what Mr. Kachmar admitted, his bad behavior and uncontrolled temper. I find it convenient that he denies finite wording or actions that would specifically make his actions criminal. Seems he might be in fact be the liar.

    Ethics champ
  9. report print email
    Checking Backgrounds and Promises...
    October 17, 2013 | 10:01 AM

    While you are all so busy looking into the past of a hard working and HONEST city employee to add to your attacks -- try looking into the PAST ESCAPADES of Ms Stewart who is so quick to sound so "insulted". You may need to research other names she has used.
    Also, ask Ms. Wilson what she was offered by Mr. Bodker in return for her support!
    The stench is yet to really surface!

    Cover ALL Bases!
    Johns Creek
  10. report print email
    Mars and Cover ALL Bases
    October 17, 2013 | 03:24 PM

    Why don't you get it? Kachmar already PARTIALLY admitted the truth of his actions. His accusers have been straight forward and used the legal and rightful city ethics violations processes in response to his horrific behavior. This isn't about Bodker. Maybe everyone wouldn't be so opposed to the investigation into the Mayor if it had been pursued in the same official and rightful way these victims of Kachmars addressed his attack. If the case against the Mayor is so strong and there is so much evidence, you don't need to sell it and team Kachmar doesn't need to blame a separate incident on the Mayor in order to bolster support. You all make yourselves look weak and immoral in the way manage situations. I'm sure Randall would waste no time in throwing up noise if the Mayor had said 1/10th of what Kachmar did. Since these people may be supporters of the Mayor though, team Kachmar is saying they deserved it? What is that? Everyone that approved their name on the public blackmail letter yesterday should be thrown out on their b-hind.

    Ethics Champ
  11. report print email
    Cover All Bases--its a GRAND SLAM
    October 17, 2013 | 05:14 PM

    John Kachmar has a history that is only being brought up now because of HIS ACTIONS directed towards citizens he is supposed to serve. You say he is HONEST? Here is a link to a federal lawsuit filed against him at his old job--PLEASE READ IT! SYnopsis is that a city whistleblower was fired by him in retaliation because Kachmar was covering for the CEO of a company that did business with the city. The employee thought he could save that city $500,000 and Kachmar prevented that info from getting to City Council specifically because he wanted to emberass the council. Sounds like Kachmar has some honesty issues in dealing with councils--that is relavent.

    Here is the link:

    Other issues which are not in dispute from the JK file/career:

    1. Kachmar was caught speeding and driving a city vehicle on a suspended license. When that issue was brought up, John called it a "witch hunt" and a "politically driven issue"???? Does this man EVER take responsibility for his actions--he is always blaming others for HIS actions!!
    2. Kachmar was prosecuted for assaulting a 14 year old boy while he was city manager back in 2000. The facts were not disputed--he grabbed a boy and told him to shut up at a movie theatre. Judge acquited Kachmar not because of any reason other than they felt there was no ill intent and the child was not harmed. Judge would not allow prosecution pictures of the red marks on the child's neck introduced as evidence so JK got off perhaps on a technicality.

    3. John Kachmar had liens from unpaid Income Txes--how honest is that?

    4. Previous planning commission employee resigned over his bullying tactics.

    5. John directs language such as "p***y", "c**k s****r", "a**h**e" and "you are goinjg to enjoy getting bu** f****d" and allegedly pokes the citizen in the chest at the same time. This after he follows a female citizen out the door to confront her and call her a liar. John of course blames this on Bodker and says this is "politics"!!

    6. John served his country proudly and well half a century or so ago and that is to be commended. BUT his behaviour and career as a city manager is relevant and it is full of ethical, legal and integrity issues. John also has a bad habit of blaming others for his actions--that is not honest leadership. Leadership takes responsibility for actions--John seems unable to do that.

    If issues arise re: Ms. Stewart there is a process to vote her out of office--same with the Mayor. BUT, to defend the indefensable, which right now is John Kachmar--that will be the legacy of Randall, Ivan, Karen and Bev :( Worst of all, it looks like they are more concerned about their short term political gain than anything else--they are lining up behind John because, like them, he hates the Mayor.

    That is not a good reason to support this disgrace of a City Manager.

    Grand Slam
  12. report print email
    Everyone make time to come to council meeting on Monday
    October 17, 2013 | 09:40 PM

    Make them look the people and voters in the face when they do what they do on Monday. Based on their pattern of behavior, they will dig in further and really step in it. Will it all go their way Monday? We'll all have to get a front row seat to see.

    ethics champ
  13. report print email
    It Is Simple
    October 17, 2013 | 10:25 PM

    Covering All Basis, why do you think I had to be offered something to support Mayor Bodker?

    Rhonda Wilson
    Johns Creek
  14. report print email
    It's all about leadership, not politics
    October 18, 2013 | 10:01 AM

    John Kachmar should resign for his inappropriate behavior on October 7, 2013, following the City Council meeting. His outburst of profanity with a group of Johns Creek residents is inexcusable. As the chief executive of the City’s staff and operations, Mr. Kachmar must lead by example. His behavior last week would not be tolerated in any other public or private enterprise. This profanity-laced vitriolic attack on a group of Johns Creek citizens should be dealt with swiftly.

    More than 10 days later, Mr. Kachmar has not offered an apology for this incident. The City Council should step in and make it clear, in no uncertain terms, that the City of Johns Creek will not accept this behavior from any of its employees.
    Mr. Kachmar, in his public statements, has somehow blamed this incident on the investigation of Mayor Mike Bodker and his supporters. Mr. Kachmar’s verbal assault on a Johns Creek citizen should not be interpreted in any context other than Mr. Kachmar’s failure to appropriately represent the City of Johns Creek in a public setting. This is not a political issue; it is simply an issue of leadership.

    Mr. Kachmar is a United States Marine. He knows the Marine’s definition of honor is to exemplify the ultimate in ethical and moral behavior both in and out of the Marine Corp and to be accountable for his own behavior. As such, and given the lack of an apology, the only viable and honorable path forward is for Mr. Kachmar to resign for the good of the City of Johns Creek and its citizens.

    Let’s get the City of Johns Creek back on track and repair its tattered image. The resignation of Mr. Kachmar is a major step in that direction.

    Steve Broadbent
    Johns Creek
  15. report print email
    Hard working and Honest?
    October 20, 2013 | 09:32 PM

    HONEST? Honest like, not paying taxes or tickets? Honest like getting sued in Federal court for wrongly firing a city employee that called out his "honesty"? Honest like wrongly checking inmates out of prison for the weekend to so they could "visit" each other? Honest like allegedly assaulting a teenager? Honest like LYING about this incident? He leaves a trail of "honesty" everywhere he goes. Thanks for the chuckle.

  16. report print email
    October 22, 2013 | 01:35 PM

    When does Jerry Bush get justice? The city manager threatened to have him assaulted and nothing has happened! Brad R witnessed this and ran away. Randall Johnson and Karen Richardson, where is justice for Jerry?

    Johns Creek
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