Ed Murray, the mayor of “sanctuary city” Seattle, is facing a lawsuit from a 46-year-old man who says Murray repeatedly “raped and molested him” while the accuser was a crack-addicted teenager in the 1980s, The Seattle Times reports.
The man from Kent, Washington, identified only as “D.H.” in the lawsuit filed in a state court, accuses the mayor of sexually abusing him in frequent encounters and paying him from $10 to $20 each time.
“I have been dealing with this for over 30 years,” the accuser said on Thursday, adding he’s been sober for a year. He described the revelation as essential to the “healing process” of addiction recovery, coming to terms with “the shame, the embarrassment, the guilt, the humiliation that I put myself through and that he put me through.”
Murray is seeking re-election in 2017 and has denied the story as he cancelled a Thursday afternoon news conference on police reform. He has not been seen in public since.
A statement from a Murray staffer reads:
These false accusations are intended to damage a prominent elected official who has been a defender of vulnerable populations for decades. It is not a coincidence that this shakedown effort comes within weeks of the campaign filing deadline. These unsubstantiated assertions, dating back three decades, are categorically false. Mayor Murray has never engaged in an inappropriate relationship with any minor. … Mayor Murray will vigorously fight these allegations in court.
D.H.’s accusations are not the first toxic charges to be leveled at the liberal, openly homosexual mayor.
Two other men, Jeff Simpson and Lloyd Anderson, also say they were victims of Murray’s alleged sexual abuse when as boys they were in a center for troubled children in the 1980s. Simpson came forward with the charges in 1984, but after talking to a social worker and police officer, no charges resulted.
The previous men were dismissed at the time as being agents of “extreme right-wing anti-gay activists in the midst of the marriage equality campaign.”
Murray is married to his same-sex partner.
In the lawsuit, D.H. describes meeting Murray on a bus and being invited to Murray’s apartment for a sexual encounter.
After bartering over the fee, D.H. says the two compromised on $10 to $15. The transactions continued for the next four to five years on at least 50 occasions, according to the accuser.
“And there’s times he would be doing certain things and I would tell him to stop and he wouldn’t stop, and I let it happen because I wanted that money so I can go get those drugs,” D.H. said in the interview.
The lawsuit provides a description of Murray’s 1980s apartment, gives a valid phone number and even goes into details about Murray’s private parts.
According to D.H.’s lawsuit, prior to engaging in sexual activity in 1986, “Mr. Murray asked D.H. his age, and he responded truthfully, age 15.” Murray was about 30 at that time.
Whether consensual or not, sex with a minor is statutory rape under state law. Though the statute of limitations makes any criminal charges impossible it does not affect civil litigation.
D.H.’s civil lawsuit does not specify what damages it seeks and notes that the accuser has never made “any financial demands” of Murray.
D.H. said he is going public with his story now because, when his father recently died, he felt he no longer had to remain silent about the episodes. He remains in addiction recovery programs and is receiving counseling.