DETROIT (WWJ) – He says he’s doing fine, despite a deliberate effort to destroy him.
For the first time in three months, Detroit is hearing from AWOL ex-City Council President Charles Pugh.
Where’s he been? When WWJ’s Sean Lee spoke with him on Friday he declined to comment — except to say his official statement speaks for itself.
That statement, dropped off Friday to the Detroit City Council, does not explain his extended absence.
It reads, in part:
“It has been an honor to work with you at council and the Election Commission. I am grateful for the opportunity to have served the city we all love. I have accepted an offer for employment elsewhere. Because of that, I am stepping down from my position on the Detroit City Council immediately.”
That resignation may be redundant.
Pugh was relieved of his duties after he suddenly went off the grid without explanation, failing to show up for council meetings. State-appointed Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr later eliminated his power and pay.
In the letter, obtained by WWJ’s Stephanie Davis, Pugh goes on to say he appreciates all the love, prayers and support — and wants everyone to know that he’s “doing just fine.”
“It’s been challenging,” Pugh writes, “but I’ve found the strength to move on with my life despite a deliberate effort to destroy me with rumors, innuendo, half-truth and B.S. (including a false police report filed against me).
“However, God is still good, and I’m moving on — grateful for every lesson I have learned.” [READ THE COMPLETE LETTER]
Pugh’s disappearance came amid allegations he had an inappropriate relationship with a Detroit Public Schools student who he mentored. No charges were filed, and a criminal investigation was suspended.
Pugh has been spotted in both Seattle and New York City over the last several weeks.
New City Council President Saunteel Jenkins says she doesn’t have any details about Pugh’s future, or about his recent past.
“I know the same things that you all know,” Jenkins said.
“But I know that, individually, everybody deals with stress and pressure differently. And I think that Charles had to find a way to deal with this, in a way that would help make him healthy and whole again,” she said.
[Catch up on this story HERE].