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Nashville Mayor Megan Barry Resigns After Pleading Guilty To Theft

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry (D) has resigned from office after pleading guilty on Tuesday to felony theft of property over $10,000 in relation to her admitted affair with a former police bodyguard.

Her plea came with an agreement to reimburse the city $11,000 and serve three years’ unsupervised probation. If she completes the agreement, the charges can be dismissed and expunged.

Former Metropolitan Nashville Police Department Sgt. Robert Forrest, who retired after news of his affair with Barry, also pleaded guilty to criminal theft on Tuesday, the Tennessean reported. He agreed to pay $45,000 restitution to the city.

At a morning press conference, Barry thanked her supporters who reached out to her “during these many difficult and trying months,” as well as Nashville’s citizens and her staff.

“I sincerely hope and believe that my own actions will not tarnish or otherwise detract from all of the great work that they do,” she said in a statement.

Vice Mayor David Briley is expected to be sworn into office as her replacement.

This development came roughly a month after she admitted to an affair with Forrest.

Both Barry and Forrest are married, though Forrest’s wife recently filed for divorce. Barry’s husband, Bruce Barry, has expressed ongoing support for her on social media.

News of the scandal led Nashville’s City Council to create a special committee to determine whether she had misused public funds as a result of the affair.

Some key questions that have been raised since news of the affair include whether Forrest’s six-digit overtime pay over the last three years was legitimate and whether their affair factored into her decision not to support a civilian review board of the force.

The mayor’s office had denied any suggestions that she misused travel time or taxpayers’ money because of their relationship.

The Tennessean’s editorial board encouraged her resignation in a piece published last week. It followed an earlier editorial by the news outlet titled: “Megan Barry betrayed Nashville.”

Barry became the city’s first female mayor when sworn into office in 2015.

This story has been updated following news of Barry’s resignation.

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