Photo courtesy of Nashville Scene
Story by Rachael Keisling / Contributing Writer
Megan Barry, the mayor of Nashville, admitted to having an extramarital affair with Metro Police Sgt. Robert Forrest Jr, who was in charge of Barry’s security detail, on Wednesday.
According to reports by The Tennessean, Barry announced the affair after inquiries were made due to Forrest’s unexpected retirement. Forrest, who has served in his position under three mayors, submitted his retirement papers on Jan. 17, and his last day was Wednesday. Both Barry and Forrest are married. A press release was published on Wednesday, in which Barry detailed her apology and thoughts on the affair.
The release reads,
“Today, I have acknowledged publicly that I have engaged in an extramarital affair with the former head of my security detail. I accept full responsibility for the pain I have caused my family and his. I am so sorry to my husband Bruce, who has stood by me in my darkest moments and remains committed to our marriage, just as I am committed to repairing the damage I have done. I also must apologize to the people of Nashville who elected me to serve as your mayor. I knew my actions could cause damage to my office and the ones I loved, but I did it anyway. I must hold myself to the highest standard of which the voters deserve to expect. Please know that I’m disappointed in myself but also understand that I’m a human and that I made a mistake. In 2015, I was elected to serve as Mayor of Nashville on a platform that included building more affordable housing, improving public education, and promoting better transportation options. We have made progress on these fronts – but there is more to be done. While I regret any distractions that will be caused by my actions, I remain firmly committed to working hard to serve the people of Nashville now and into the future. God will forgive me, but the people of Nashville don’t have to. In the weeks and months to come, I will work hard to earn your forgiveness and earn back your trust.”
While Forrest has been reluctant to speak with news organizations, his attorney, David Raybin, released an official statement.
“I deeply regret that my professional relationship with Mayor Barry turned into a personal one,” Forrest said in the statement. “This has caused great pain for my wife, my family, friends and colleagues. At no time did I ever violate my oath as a police officer or engage in actions that would abuse the public trust.”
According to The Tennessean, Barry will not be resigning from her position. Barry has served as the mayor of Nashville since 2015.
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