Two women who claim their reputations have been harmed by a Forest Park council member are suing that elected official for statements he made to a newspaper reporter.

Gloria Backman and Amanda O’Connor filed a defamation case against Commissioner Mark Hosty on Oct. 26, alleging Hosty’s characterization of the women, as told to the newspaper, was a targeted attack on their character. On May 8, O’Connor filed a police complaint against Hosty following a confrontation that occurred near Hosty’s home at the intersection of Circle and Warren streets. During that incident, Hosty is alleged to have cursed at the women and O’Connor later told police she left the area feeling intimidated. No charges were filed as a result of O’Connor’s complaint.

In an article on the police complaint published by the Review, Hosty made further characterizations of Backman and O’Connor. It is these statements for which the commissioner is being sued.

Hosty said he is aware of the allegation, but had not yet been served a copy of the suit and would not comment until he had a chance to review it. Backman, too, declined to comment on the suit. The plaintiffs are seeking at least $50,000 in damages and have requested a jury trial.