Linda Harvell – Mayor Pro Tem – College Station City Council Place 3 said the following about Brazos Guardian founder David Flash in an email to City of College Station Economic Development Director Natalie Ruiz:
“David Flash and his Brazos Reporter on FB always seem to be on top of reporting what new businesses are coming to town, what’s closing, etc. Where does he get his information? I won’t share his page but he sure has some good information.”
Why the aversion to sharing “good information” that the reporter publishes? While it is impossible to know anyone’s motivations with certainty, the following background facts shed light on her reluctance to share the posts from “Brazos Reporter on FB:”
Harvell frequently shared Flash’s posts on his Brazos Business and Eat BCS sites and social accounts for years. In fact, that’s how Flash became aware of her. Her frequent sharing was the genesis of a “facebook friendship” that made her the first city council member Flash would contact with questions about issues he reported on, like the city’s media spending and her views on commercial and residential development.
That all changed when Flash filed and publicized a complaint concerning misconduct in the College Station Police Department. The complaint Flash filed also constitutes “good information,” supported with extensive documentary evidence. But it contains troubling truths about a city department that Harvell has a close, friendly relationship with.
In an apparent effort to discredit the reporter, Harvell has used her City of College Station email account to communicate ad hominem attacks, several of which constitute libel per se, about him to the city’s mayor, city manager, police chief, deputy city manager, and deputy city secretary. Public records requests reveal the disparaging emails started in February 2018, when Flash made his complaint public. They have continued ever since.
“I won’t share his page but he sure has some good information,” is the nicest thing Harvell has said about the Flash since he filed and publicized his complaint. It’s also one of the only true things she has said.