In spring, a civil lawsuit targeted Murray over allegations he sexually abused a drug-addicted teen he met on Capitol Hill in the 1980s before Murray launched his political career. That suit was eventually dropped before being refiled and adding blame to the city for allowing Murray to use his office to attack his accusers.
As part of the agreement, the city will pay accuser Delvonn Heckard $150,000.
“With this settlement, the city takes an important step in putting this sad chapter behind us, limiting litigation expenses, and allowing Mr. Heckard to move forward with his life,” Holmes said in a statement on the deal.
Heckard lawyer Lincoln Beauregard said Seattle and Holmes “handled this incredibly well and saved the city a lot of pain by doing so.”
Holmes also called the agreement the “best opportunity for healing for all.”
“I agree with the city attorney that settling this lawsuit is the right thing to do and allows our city to begin to heal,” Mayor Jenny Durkan said in the city hall statement released Saturday night. “As someone who has represented victims of sexual assault, I know this has caused a lot of pain and trauma for Mr. Heckard as well as many survivors.”
KING 5 reported on the five men who have accused Ed Murray and the mayor’s statement reacting to the Heckard settlement:
“I am relieved to put this matter behind me; however, that relief is bittersweet, tempered by the painful experience we have all undergone. The lawsuit was painful for me, my husband, my family, and my former staff because the allegations were untrue. I did not molest or have any sexual contact with the plaintiff. I was prepared to defend myself in court (as I have been doing at my own expense), but wholeheartedly agree with the City’s decision to pay $150,000 to avoid the cost and uncertainty of litigation.”
Capitol Hill resident Murray, now 62, dropped his bid for reelection and resigned after months of legal and political fighting.
BECOME A 'PAY WHAT YOU CAN' CHS SUBSCRIBER TODAY: Support local journalism dedicated to your neighborhood. SUBSCRIBE HERE. Join to become a subscriber at $1/$5/$10 a month to help CHS provide community news with NO PAYWALL. You can also sign up for a one-time annual payment.