Kansas VA official fired for inappropriate conduct


TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – A high-level, Topeka-based Veterans Affairs official has been fired following an investigation into inappropriate conduct regarding sexually charged communication.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that former Health Resource Center director Robert Downs received the VA’s decision to terminate his employment April 12.

The investigation alleges Downs and a female VA employee exchanged hundreds of salacious chat messages, most made during business hours, for over two years.

The woman was based out of the Asheville, North Carolina, VA Medical Center.

In addition to sexually provocative messages, the two allegedly discussed travel plans to see each other, visiting a strip club together, open marriage and the woman’s job prospects at Kansas VA offices.

Downs says the relationship was consensual and no one benefited professionally. But he adds he takes full responsibility and is ready to move on.

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