Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, beset over the past five months by sex abuse allegations, plans to resign Wednesday, bringing an ignoble end to a lengthy political career in which he championed gay rights and better pay for workers.
His announcement Tuesday came after The Seattle Times reported that a fifth man — one of his cousins — had accused Murray of molesting him decades ago. Though he has vehemently denied all of the accusations against him, Murray, a Democrat, had already decided not to seek re-election.
"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," he said in a statement.
He apologized to his staff and to the city for "this painful situation," and said it had become clear that his resignation was best for the city.
The news left the city waiting to hear who would fulfill the remaining months in his term.
The latest allegations came from Joseph Dyer, the son of Murray's first cousin, Maryellen Sottile. Dyer told the newspaper he was 13 and Murray was in his early 20s when Murray came to live with Dyer's family in Medford, New York, in 1975. The two shared a bedroom, and Murray repeatedly molested him over the course of a year, Dyer said.
"There would be times when I would fake sleeping because I didn't want him touching me," Dyer said.
Dyer said the molestation stopped only after Murray was accused of abuse by a boy in a Catholic group home where Murray worked. Dyer told the newspaper his uncle persuaded the group home not to pursue charges as long as Murray left.
Efforts by The Associated Press to reach Dyer were not immediately successful.
Murray, who is gay, has not faced criminal charges. He denied abusing Dyer and blamed the allegation on resentment between their families.
He initially told the Times he would not resign, but eventually did so as pressure mounted Tuesday.