Lawsuit accuses Seattle Mayor Ed Murray of sexually abusing teen in 1980s

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray addresses a crowd protesting the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in North Dakota in 2016. (Photo by Chloe Collyer.)

A Kent man accused Seattle Mayor Ed Murray of raping and molesting him over several years in the 1980s, when the man was in his teens and Murray was in his 30s, according to a story in The Seattle Times. Murray denied the accusation on Thursday through his spokesman and a lawyer.

The Times reported that the man, identified through his initials D.H., told reporters that Murray paid him for sex over several years after they met on a bus in Capitol Hill.

About nine years ago ago, two other men accused Murray of molesting them when they were teenagers in Portland — Murray would have been in his 20s — but the lawsuit filed this week is the first formal accusation against Murray in court according to the Times. At the time, Murray was in the Washington State Legislature.

The three men spoke to the Seattle Times, which detailed the similarities between the accusers’ accounts.

Seattle’s national profile — and Murray’s — has risen over the past few months, after the city took high profile stances on national issues including filing a lawsuit last week over the immigration policies of President Donald Trump and being one of the first cities to divest from financial institutions financing the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Murray, who became Seattle mayor in 2013, has announced plans to run for re-election this year, drawing opponents that include attorney, activist and poet Nikkita Oliver, and bicycle advocate Andres Salomon.

According to the Times, Murray denied the claims, through a statement issued by his personal spokesman, who noted the timing and said that Murray “will vigorously fight” the allegations in court.

Further reading

Seattle Times: Lawsuit alleges Seattle Mayor Ed Murray sexually abused troubled teen in 1980s