Gwinnett ethics board to meet Thursday to consider Marlene Fosque case

An ethics complaint against Gwinnett County Commissioner Marlene Fosque was filed following a panel she organized regarding a controversial ICE program. ELIJAH NOUVELAGE/SPECIAL TO THE AJC AJC FILE PHOTO
An ethics complaint against Gwinnett County Commissioner Marlene Fosque was filed following a panel she organized regarding a controversial ICE program. ELIJAH NOUVELAGE/SPECIAL TO THE AJC AJC FILE PHOTO

Gwinnett County's ethics board will meet Thursday to consider a case filed against Commissioner Marlene Fosque.

The board is not expected to make a recommendation Thursday, but will hear evidence regarding a complaint about comments Fosque made in a public meeting.

It’s the second time the ethics board has considered whether a county commissioner’s remarks constitute an ethics violation.

In 2017, county commissioners publicly reprimanded fellow commissioner Tommy Hunter for calling Rep. John Lewis a "racist pig" on Facebook.

That process revealed questions — that still remain — about whether the ethics board should be policing speech and personal behavior.

Fosque has said, in response to the complaint, that she was exercising her free speech when she called D.A. King "someone known for spewing hatred and bigotry and racism." King is the controversial founder of a group called the Dustin Inman Society which is opposed to illegal immigration.

The remarks came after King participated in a forum that Fosque organized to discuss the Gwinnett sheriff’s participation in a federal immigration enforcement program known as 287(g).