SAN DIEGO - San Diego Mayor Bob Filner refused to acknowledge reports of a Department of Justice investigation into his dealings with a developer who wrote checks totaling $100,000 in exchange for a 9-foot easement on his Kearny Mesa apartment building under construction.
10News reporter Allison Ash broached the subject at a Filner news conference regarding another matter.
Ash: "Can we ask you, Mr. Mayor, about your reaction to the Department of Justice investigating the Sunroad issue?"
Filner: "Tell me how you know that."
Ash: "We know it from sources, that there is an investigation going on."
Filner: "Tell me how you know that?"
Ash: "Not my sources, some sources that we have at the station. Are you saying that there is not an investigation?"
Filner: "I'm not going to respond to rumors and anonymous sources."
When asked by another reporter whether members of his staff had been questioned by federal investigators, the mayor repeated himself.
"I'm not going to respond to any rumors or anonymous sources," he said. "There's no information which you have, as far as I know."
Last week Filner told reporters he planned to return two checks totaling $100,000 to Sunroad Enterprises after it became clear the developer thought it was a payment, not a donation.
A source told 10News returning the money indicated a "consciousness of guilt," meaning the mayor knew the donation wasn't appropriate.
10News will continue to follow the investigation and let you know the results when they become available.