Apologize to PO? You should first apologize to Vladimir Kalitvianski. He's not on PO now.
It's not called a blunder if you know it's wrong as you are doing it. It's also not a very credible apology if you are forced into it by being exposed first, it's a Nixonian Checkers speech. The issue is not only the comment deletion, which violated Vladimir's user rights. Another issue, more pressing for me, is that you didn't tell the other moderators about it, you knowingly misled us, and happily let us accuse Vladimir of lying when he brought it up. And then you let him leave the site over this, knowing what happened. And you continued to keep quiet, until I happened to figure it out. "Detective" wasn't part of the job description, you know.
You also took the time to smear me a ton in private emails as I was looking into this, not like I cared, except I figured you must have done something wrong. You asked me to go away and stop moderating, and so on and so on. You still bring up my scientific criticism of Marco Frasca as if it were a personal attack, or a dirty trick. I only bluntly pointed out Frasca's scientific mistakes, and when he didn't get it, I made too-rude comments on his wall in frustration.
You also have the cojones to introduce a novelty: "three strikes" for moderators.
I consider this the first official warning against my moderatorship, for having violated the principles of PhysicsOverflow. Two more, and I will be forced to step down from moderatorship
How about that? You get to lie to the moderators twice more. That sounds like fun. Do you realize what a collossal waste of time this was? Do you think people have patience for two more? Also, there's no guarantee that the next time won't be super subtle. It's not like anyone noticed anything was wrong until I started cursing about it.
What did we say about official warnings? There is no need for them, not even against yourself. We don't have a "three strikes" policy for moderators, we never made policy about moderation problems, besides being allowed to discuss it openly on meta. No moderator has ever really been accused of any deliberate wrongdoing before. I think the community decides whether to accept a moderator, based on all available information. That voting community must include Vladimir Kalitvianski, by the way.
The question is how to prevent this kind of nonsense in the future. I think one problem here is anonymity. I see no need for anonymous moderatorship. It helps prevent problems if your real name and reputation is at stake, just like everyone else's.