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Seattle mayor says he’ll resign after 5th molestation claim surfaces

Seattle Post-Intelligencer logo Seattle Post-Intelligencer 9/12/2017 By Levi Pulkkinen, SeattlePI and and Dan DeMay
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Seattle Mayor Ed Murray will resign, the mayor’s office announced Tuesday afternoon hours after news broke that a fifth man has accused the mayor of molesting him as a child.

Murray said in a statement that he will resign effective 5 p.m. Wednesday. City Council President Bruce Harrell is expected to serve as mayor until the November election.

For months, Murray has faced allegations that he sexually abused homeless boys he encountered decades ago. On Wednesday, Murray’s cousin Joseph Dyer levied similar allegations, saying he felt moved to act because of Murray’s treatment of his accusers.

MORE FROM SEATTLEPI: Seattle mayor's cousin accuses him of sexual abuse

Dyer, 54, said he was 13 years old when Murray sexually assaulted him for a year while they shared a bedroom in Dyer's mother's home on Long Island, New York in the 1970s.

“I have come forward after these years to stand in support of Delvonn Heckard, the other accusers, and all sex abuse victims,” Dyer said in a declaration provided by attorneys for Heckard, whose sexual abuse claims against Murray first brought long-whispered allegations against the mayor to the fore.

In this April 27, 2017, file photo, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray speaks during a press conference in Seattle. A fourth man has accused Murray of paying him for sex when the man was a teenager decades ago, claims that were vehemently denied Wednesday, May 3 by a spokesman for the mayor. © (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, file) In this April 27, 2017, file photo, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray speaks during a press conference in Seattle. A fourth man has accused Murray of paying him for sex when the man was a teenager decades ago, claims that were vehemently denied Wednesday, May 3 by a spokesman for the mayor. “I am offering this declaration to rebut Murray’s claims that he never molested a child and/or the allegations against him were concocted as some sort of right-wing conspiracy,” Dyer continued. “I do not know any of the other victims mentioned in this statement, and I am not part of any conspiracy.”

Mayoral candidate Cary Moon called for Murray’s resignation four months ago. Her opponent, Murray-endorsed ex-U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan, called for Murray’s resignation Tuesday.

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Announcing his resignation, Murray continued to dispute the allegations against him.

“I am announcing my resignation as mayor, effective at 5 p.m. tomorrow,” Murray said in a statement. “While the allegations against me are not true, it is important that my personal issues do not affect the ability of our city government to conduct the public’s business.”

After listing his accomplishments in office, Murray also said that it has “become clear to me that in light of the latest news reports it is best for the city if I step aside.”

“To the people of this special city and to my dedicated staff, I am sorry for this painful situation.”

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