In many ways, a mayor is like the CEO of a company, except instead of running a business, they're responsible for taking care of a city.
Their responsibilities include ensuring laws are being observed and enforced, and this is why the residents of Somerset, Kentucky were shocked to learn that their mayor was involved in a hit-and-run.
Eddie Girdler, who has served the city since 2007, failed to break on time for a red light and ended up hitting a 15-year-old bicyclist who was crossing the intersection with two other cyclists.
According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, Girdler didn't immediately flee the scene. He stuck around for a short while before driving away in his SUV.
Under Kentucky law, if you're involved in an accident that causes injury or damage, you must stop and “render reasonable assistance," which includes taking the victim to a hospital or making arrangements so they can get treatment.
The GOP politician has recently been cited for leaving the scene of an accident and failure to give aid to the injured girl.
Despite witness accounts that say they've seen a Chevrolet Tahoe with an official license plate brake so hard the tires screeched, the mayor insists that he did not realize "anything had happened" until he returned to the scene later.
Girdler, who said he was on his way to get food, told reporters that he knew it was a "close call" because the girl fell, but when she and the people she was with left without saying a thing, he assumed nothing serious happened.
He voluntarily took a blood test to prove that he wasn't impaired at the time of the accident.
As for the teen, police did not reveal her name or condition, but WKYT reported that she is being treated for a liver laceration. Her mother initially drove her to Lake Cumberland Regional Medical Center for treatment, but she was later flown to the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital.
In a statement, Girdler said his "prayers and thoughts are with the person for a speedy recovery.”
"I was issued a citation for an alleged traffic violation Sunday afternoon involving a person riding a bicycle at an intersection downtown. The citation was for leaving the scene of an accident but I was not aware of any accident since the area was clear," he wrote.
"The report indicated that no alcohol or drugs were involved. I requested and insisted upon a blood test in addiction to the officers report. I hope you will help by not spreading false news about this. I was not arrested only cited for an alleged traffic violation. You will soon have the facts."
The scandal couldn't have come at a worst time for Girdler, who is running for re-election in the November general election. People took to Twitter to express their thoughts about the situation, and many called for the mayor to be "forced out office."
Do you think Girdler should be removed from office? Let us know in the comments!