Village board candidate who used racial slur loses in landslide

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SOUTHAMPTON -

Southampton Village residents voted to fill two trustee seats Friday, capping a controversial campaign that saw one candidate use a racial slur.

Candidate Valerie Smith recently used the slur while placing a 911 call.

"There's a bunch of (expletive) standing in front of my house, drinking Hennessy and everything else," she told the dispatcher.

Incumbents Nancy McGann and William Hattrick Jr. won with 536 and 626 votes, respectively. Smith, who garnered only 49 votes, came in behind write-in candidate Jesse Warren, who tallied up 151.

At first Smith claimed there was nothing wrong with using such language, but she later issued an apology. She did not respond to a News 12 call seeking comment.

Her behavior still riled many voters who pledged to prevent her election. Hundreds of people voted before the polls closed at 9 p.m., a massive leap considering the previous village election saw only 125 ballots in total.

Most of the voters News 12 spoke with said they did not vote for Smith.

"You really should be careful about what you say and what you do," said resident Kevin Maginsky. "Everybody should be treated fairly."

Evelyn Johnson, another village resident, said that kind of talk is behind the times.

"This is not back in the 1800s, the 1700s," she said. "It's not like that anymore."

Michael Irving won the mayor job over Richard Yastrzemski.

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