March 6, 2018 / 5:27 PM / 7 months ago

Nashville mayor resigns after pleading guilty to theft

NASHVILLE (Reuters) - Nashville Mayor Megan Barry resigned on Tuesday after pleading guilty in state court to theft in connection with an extramarital affair she admitted to having with the head of her security detail.

In late January, Barry admitted she had a two-year affair with Metropolitan Nashville Police Department Sergeant Robert Forrest, who resigned a day before the mayor’s admission.

Under a deal reached with the Davidson County District Attorney General’s Office in Nashville, Barry pleaded guilty in Davidson County Criminal Court to three counts of felony theft and was ordered to repay the city $11,000 for money that prosecutors said was spent on overtime for Forrest.

“I will watch as a private citizen and I will be tremendously proud,” she told reporters after the hearing, referring to the city. “I love you Nashville.”

Barry, a Democrat, had faced calls to resign and was the subject of multiple investigations, including a criminal inquiry by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations.

She said Vice Mayor David Briley would be sworn in as mayor on Tuesday.

Forrest also pleaded guilty on Tuesday to the same charges and agreed to repay the city $45,000 for salary and overtime earned on the job when he was not performing his duties as the mayor’s security detail, prosecutors said. Both Barry and Forrest received three years probation.

As part of the plea deals both had negotiated, Davidson County District Attorney General Glenn Funk said in a statement that Barry and Forrest could petition the court to expunge their criminal records if they successfully complete probation.

Former Nashville mayor Megan Barry is pictured in this undated handout photo obtained by Reuters March 6, 2018. Metro Nashville Police Department/Handout via REUTERS

Editing by Ben Klayman and Bernadette Baum

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