WATCH: Nashville mayor officially resigns after pleading guilty to felony theft
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) —
The Nashville mayor has officially stepped down moments after pleading guilty to felony theft stemming from an investigation into her admitted affair.
Megan Barry announced the resignation during a news conference Tuesday morning. She served as Nashville’s mayor for two and a half years.
“My unwavering love and sincere affection for this amazing city and its great city will never come to an end,” Barry said.
Just an hour before, Barry pleads guilty to felony theft over $10,000 for "unlawful expenditures" and agreed to reimburse the city $11,000. Barry will serve three years probation and has the chance to have her record expunged in three years.
The announcement comes a month after admitting an affair with the former head of her Metro Police security detail Sgt. Rob Forrest. Forrest also pleads guilty Tuesday to felony theft and must repay the city $45,000.
During her announcement, Barry thanked the heads of her department and the “thousands and thousands” of people who have supported her, written her and grieved with her during these “trying times.”
As this unfolds, Nashvillians are about to decide on a massive transit plan proposed by Barry. The $8.9 billion transit plan will be on the May 1 ballot for Davidson County voters. It includes the city’s first light rail system and a downtown tunnel.
Barry ended the news conference saying, “God bless this wonderful city, I love you Nashville.”
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said its investigation is active and ongoing.
What’s Next For Nashville:
Vice Mayor David Briley will be sworn in as Nashville Mayor at 3 p.m. Tuesday.
Councilwoman Sheri Weiner will then be sworn in as Vice Mayor.
A special election will take place in August.
Megan Barry's full statement:
While my time as your mayor concludes today, my unwavering love and sincere affection for this wonderful city and its great people shall never come to an end.
No one is as excited about this city, and its bright and limitless future, then I am.
Nashville, with its boundless energy, its infectious optimism, it is never- encountered-an-obstacle-it-couldn’t-overcome attitude, will, in the years ahead, continue its steady march toward the very top of the list of great American cities.
It’s a continued climb that I will watch, but I will watch as a private citizen, and I will be tremendously proud nonetheless.
While today is primarily about the smooth transition from my administration to that of Vice Mayor Briley, I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge and thank the thousands and thousands of people who have reached out to me, written me, encouraged me, comforted me, worried endlessly about me, and most importantly prayed for me during these many difficult and trying months.
In two and a half short years, we have made great strides and progress on affordable housing, transit, public education, youth opportunity, quality of life, and our economy.
None of this would have been possible without my incredible staff, our talented department heads, and all of the dedicated men and women of the Metropolitan Government who have worked hard to make the lives of Nashvillians a little better each day.
They got up yesterday, they got up today, and they will get up again tomorrow devoted to making sure our city sings.
And I sincerely hope and believe that my own actions will not tarnish or otherwise detract from all of their great work.
It has been the honor and it has been the privilege of my entire professional life to have had the blessing of this opportunity to be your mayor.
Thank you in advance for the support that I am sure you will give to Mayor Briley in the days and weeks ahead.
God bless this wonderful city.
I love you, Nashville.