Worthington News

Accused councilman a no-show at July 1 council meeting


A Worthington City Council member who is accused of molesting a 17-year-old female intern at his jewelry business was scheduled for a July 3 arraignment on a felony charge in Franklin County Common Pleas Court.

Joseph C. Davis, 43, a councilman since 2011, was arrested by Worthington police June 25 on a charge of gross sexual imposition. He was expected to appear in Franklin County Common Pleas Court on July 3.

Davis did not attend the July 1 council meeting and could not be reached for comment.

Nothing in the city charter prevents a council member from serving if he or she is charged with or convicted of a crime, according to law director Pamela Fox.

According to a criminal complaint, Davis, of 127 E. Wilson Bridge Road, lifted the girl's leg and placed it on his while the two were in the Worthington Jewelers store May 13. Twice, according to police, the girl moved her leg and Davis tried to move it back.

Court records also state Davis approached the girl the following day and rubbed her leg from the knee up to her genitals three times.

It's not clear if anyone else was in the store at the time.

The charge is a fourth-degree felony, which carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in jail.

Check ThisWeekNEWS.com for updates.