After a fifth man came out accusing openly gay Seattle mayor Ed Murray of molesting him, Murray has decided to resign.
“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 in a statement.
“To the people of this special city and to my dedicated staff, I am sorry for this painful situation.”
The latest accusation is from Murray’s cousin, Joseph Dyer, who claimed in a Seattle Times interview that Murray “repeatedly molested him as a teenager in the 1970s.”
“There would be times when I would fake sleeping because I didn’t want him touching me,” Dyer recalled during the interview.
“And that’s when he would molest me. And my mother would be right there in the house, she’d be in the living room… And my sisters would be in their rooms, sleeping. And I would be in my room, and he would be in there, molesting me.”
Murray has denied Dyer’s allegations, claiming that it stems from hatred between the two sides of the family.
“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,” Murray said.
An unnamed man filed a child sex abuse lawsuit against the mayor in April, alleging that Murray had “repeatedly criminally raped and molested” him when he was a homeless 15-year-old in the 1980s.
The plaintiff and two other men gave interviews to the Seattle Times and all shared similar stories about a politician in his 20s and 30s who befriended street kids, paid them off and had his way with them.
Dyer is the fifth person to publicly accuse Murray of child sexual abuse this year. In May, Murray announced that he would end his re-election bid and leave politics at the end of the year once his term was finished—but now he has decided to resign early.
The Seattle City Council President will take over as mayor.