Nashville Mayor Resigns Over Using Taxpayer Money to Fund Affair With Bodyguard

Sheri Evans
March 8, 2018

The revelation comes just several weeks after Barry confirmed an affair with a now retired body guard named Rob Forrest. But on Tuesday she reversed herself, agreeing to quit as part of a plea deal that included three years of probation and a fine.

"Barry appeared in court Tuesday morning and pleaded guilty to theft of property over $10,000 - a Class C Felony".

According to District Attorney Glenn Funk, "Had this case gone to trial, witnesses are available who would testify that in March 2016 and January 2018 Megan Barry caused over 10K but less than 60K in Metro Nashville city funds to be expended unlawfully on Mr. Robert Forrest".

Vice-Mayor David Briley, a Barry ally and the scion of a prominent Nashville political family, became mayor upon her resignation, and will presumably be running in an August special election to fill her four-year term, which ends next year. A state law enforcement investigation found that Forrest took two photos of a nude woman believed to be Barry on his city-issued phone, an affidavit released February 22.

Barry, a Democrat who was elected in September 2015, is the first Nashville mayor to leave office before the expiration of his or her term in almost a century.

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Barry, who took office in 2015, was a liberal darling, with a Vanderbilt University poll showing her approval rating at 61 percent even after admitting to the affair. But soon enough the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation was checking into the possibility that the lovers had illegally financed their affair through expense reimbursements for travel on the taxpayer's dime. A lot of questions were raised among them being whether Sgt. Forrest's six-figure overtime pay over the three years was justified.

Being the first woman to be sworn in as mayor of Nashville, a lot was expected of her. Nashville citizens have continued expressing their disappointment while others show their unwavering support for the mayor.

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry pleaded guilty Tuesday to felony theft for spending more than $10,000 worth of government money, but will serve no time in jail.

According to NBC-affiliate WSMV-TV in Nashville, the press conference is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. EST.

In a statement on Tuesday, Barry, a Democrat, praised the city she led since 2015. Experienced Democratic party operative Sean Braisted serves as her campaign spokesman, and Claudia Huskey, also a veteran operative and former senior aide to Vice President Al Gore, is managing the effort. At the time she vowed to remain in office.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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