Kwame Brown Resigns from District Council
District Council Chairman Kwame Brown resigned Wednesday afternoon
District Council Chairman Kwame Brown handed in his resignation Wednesday afternoon after being charged with bank fraud, according to the Washington Post.
Though Brown's 2008 campaign had been under investigation, the charges filed against him stem from a 2006 mortgage. Court documents obtained by the Post charge that Brown lied about his income, inflating it by tens of thousands of dollars in order to obtain a new mortgage so he could buy a boat.
As recently as Tuesday Brown told reporters that he was not intending to resign. The Washington City Paper reports that today's resignation came after "Brown had asked prosecutors if they would allow him to serve out the rest of his term, but they said no."
In his resignation letter, obtained by the Post, Brown admitted to "indiscretions" and "mistakes in judgement." He added, "I have chosen the only honorable course in submitting my resignation at this time."
As the Chair Pro Tempore Councilwoman Mary Cheh will serve in Brown's stead until a meeting next week. At that time the members of the Council will vote for an acting chair and an acting chair pro tempore until a special election can be held. According to Council rules, both positions must be chosen from among the at-Large members (Phil Mendelsohn, Michael Brown, Vincent Orange and David Catania).
“I want to reassure everyone that the work of the Council will continue uninterrupted. We will move forward focused on the business the people elected us to do," said Cheh in a statement released Wednesday evening.
Brown is the second councilman in two months to resign after federal charges. Councilman Harry Thomas, Jr. pleaded guilty to stealing more than $350,000 in District funds and was sentenced to 38 months in prison.
Brown will appear in court for his plea agreement Friday at 11 a.m.