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Seattle Mayor Resigns Amid Added Allegation Of Sex Abuse

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, seen in 2013, resigned Tuesday after new allegations of sexual abuse years ago.
Elaine Thompson
Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, seen in 2013, resigned Tuesday after new allegations of sexual abuse years ago.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray resigned Tuesday following the publication of new allegations that he sexually abused a cousin at a family home in the 1970s.

In a statement, Murray denied the charge, but said that he is resigning effective the end of the business on Wednesday.

"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," Murray said.

Earlier in the day, the Seattle Times reportedthat 54-year old Joseph Dwyer, a cousin, said that Murray molested him for about a year in Dyer's mother's home in Medford, N.Y., in the mid-1970s. Dyer said he was 13 years old at the time and sharing a bedroom with Murray.

Murray told the Times that Dyer's accusations stem from old familial antagonisms.

"There's been numerous fights between our two families for many years, and much ugliness. I guess they see me down and out, and they want to finish me off," said Murray as quoted by the Times.

Dwyer is the fifth man to accuse Murray of sexual abuse since April. Murray has repeatedly and vigorously denied the charges and said that he has been targeted for his progressive politics and support of gay rights.

But the accusations took their toll. Murray, a former Democratic state legislator, had said in May that he would not seek re-election and would retire from politics at the end of the year when his term ends.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Richard Gonzales is NPR's National Desk Correspondent based in San Francisco. Along with covering the daily news of region, Gonzales' reporting has included medical marijuana, gay marriage, drive-by shootings, Jerry Brown, Willie Brown, the U.S. Ninth Circuit, the California State Supreme Court and any other legal, political, or social development occurring in Northern California relevant to the rest of the country.