The Brooklyn Park City Council on Monday voted to formally censure one of its members for violating the city's Respectful Workplace Policy and Elected Officials' Code of Conduct.

The council at its Feb. 28 meeting directed the city attorney to draft the resolution censuring Boyd Morson after an outside investigator concluded he aggressively communicated by e-mail to a female city employee and subjected her to some level of "unwanted physical contact."

Morson, whose term ends in 2024, cast the lone dissenting vote at Monday's meeting and denied the accusations outlined in a 250-page report alleging that he created a hostile work environment. The report said Morson engaged in unbecoming behavior that included whispering into the ear of a female employee while rubbing the back of her shoulders and neck.

"This is a frivolous case," Morson said at Monday's meeting. "I did nothing whatsoever to anybody in this city to touch them inappropriately."

Those were the first comments that Morson has made since the allegations were filed in late January.

"Never have I gave or offered to say anything to this because I thought this was foolish from the beginning," he said. "The allegations are not what they are alleged to be. That is not who I am. This is how they want you to think I am."

Morson also said the council rushed to judgment without ever hearing his side of the story. But the report from the outside investigator said Morson declined to be interviewed about the case despite being contacted several times.

With the censure, Morson remains on the City Council but was officially removed from city commissions, committees, task forces, boards and associations. All his official communication must flow through the city manager except for matters concerning the Economic Development Authority, which he can take directly to the executive director with a copy sent to the city manager, the resolution states.

All of Morson's e-mails, public statements and social media posts with staff members, the mayor and colleagues must be professional and not "belligerent, impertinent, abusive or disparaging," the resolution said.

Morson could be reinstated to his assignments if he completes training, education and counseling.

The censure is the most severe action a council can take against elected officials, said City Attorney Jim Thompson.

"It is upholding standards where staff feel safe to engage with elected members without fear of retribution," Thompson said. "There is the need for all of us to work to ensure we create a space that is safe healthy and welcoming for everyone who works in Brooklyn Park."