A Seattle attorney whose firm has represented dozens of people in sexual abuse cases says one reason Mayor Ed Murray hasn’t resigned — or there hasn’t been a bigger effort to get him out of office before his term ends — is because we’re in election season.
“Everyone is uncomfortable and, frankly, people are just waiting for his term to be up,” Michael Pfau told KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson.
Murray’s term ends in December. Though he considered running as a write-in candidate after dropping out, he chose not to after polling voters.
Pfau’s comments follow more calls for the mayor to step down over allegations of child sex abuse in the 1980s.
Members of SNAP, the largest support group for adult survivors of child sex abuse, planned to be outside city hall to call on Murray to resign Monday afternoon.
The group planned to deliver a letter outlining their request to the Seattle City Council.
Members of SNAP decided it’s time from Murray to resign after reading about the recently uncovered documents in which a child welfare investigator concluded that Murray abused his foster son.
Delvonn Heckard, the man who originally brought the allegations of child abuse to light earlier this year and sued Murray, is now suing the City of Seattle for millions. Heckard is asking for $1 million to $3 million from the city, arguing that the mayor used his official position as mayor to defame him while the lawsuit was active.
Heckard dropped his original lawsuit in June that alleged Murray sexually abused him in the 1980s when he was a minor. However, there are — or at least were — plans to refile next year, according to court documents.
Mayor Murray has maintained his innocence since the allegations first surfaced. He called the lawsuit against him an attempt at a political takedown.
Murray says he does not plan to step down.
“I know that today a member of the council has issued a statement calling on me to resign, and warning of action against me if I do not,” Murray said after Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez called for his resignation. “I continue to believe such a course of action would not be in the city’s best interest. That is why I am not going to resign, and intend to complete the few remaining months of my term as mayor.”
Pfau says he is surprised by how vocal Murray has been throughout the process.
“I had always thought he should just be quiet,” he said.
Listen to the interview with Pfau here.