Convicted Pitt Meadows councillor not stepping down

David Murray said potential appeal is still months away.

Despite a conviction for sexual assault, Coun. David Murray is not stepping down from Pitt Meadows council.

On Thursday, and noting that he had just been convicted at 12:30 p.m. the day before, Murray said he was not ready to make a decision about his future as a councillor.

“I’m still trying to get my head around everything,” he said.

On Wednesday, after three days in court, Murray was found guilty of sexually assaulting a 13 or 14-year-old girl who, worked for him, in 1992.

There is nothing in the Community Charter, which governs municipal politicians, to compel Murray to step down. He has remained on council despite the sex assault charge since November 2016.

Murray’s next appearance in court will be Jan. 10, when a date will be set for a sentencing hearing. That would likely follow in March.

Then, Murray noted, he will have 30 days to appeal the decision.

His attorney has advised him not to say anything more, he said.

Murray said he needs to sit down and talk to those involved.

“I wasn’t expecting this to go this way,” he said. “I’m a Christian person, and God knows I haven’t done anything.

“It’s a tough one.”

Coun. Bill Dingwall was able to make a determination shortly after the announcement, saying Murray should step down.

“It’s about the reputation of the city and public confidence,” said Dingwall.

Dingwall posted:

Former Pitt Meadows mayor Don MacLean, who didn’t serve on council with Murray, but saw him as an effective councillor, said he believes Murray should “probably” step down.

“It would be difficult for him to be able to do his job as well as he can,” said MacLean.

The former mayor found the conviction shocking, and disturbing in that politicians increasingly have trouble winning the public’s trust, he said.

Ultimately, the decision to step down or remain on council is Murray’s and MacLean suggested council could give him a leave of absence to make a decision.

They cannot bar him – as a duly elected member of council – from attending meetings.

MacLean said the remaining six members of council should be able to function effectively for year, until the next municipal election.

Mayor John Becker is away from city hall for the week. He said, in other reports, that he has been and remains a friend to Murray, and he is discussing the matter with city staff and legal representatives.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Infinite Ice’s holistic hockey program returning to Terrace in August

COVID-19 precautions in place for on-ice training, meditation, yoga and nutrition classes

Ice coming to the Terrace Sportsplex in August

Second sheet planned for October, arena closed to the public for the time being

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

Four air ambulance flights out of Terrace delayed or cancelled

Pandemic precautions caused nighttime closure of service station providing weather data to pilots

Skeena Resources, Tahltan prez excited by purchase of Eskay Creek

Skeena gets full control of mine, Barrick gets 12 per cent of Skeena and a one per cent royalty

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

Trudeau apologizes for not recusing himself from WE decision

He says his and his family’s longtime involvement with the WE organization should have kept him out of the discussions

Beverly Hills 90210 star’s family selling Vancouver Island Beach Resort

You can own Jason Priestley’s Terrace Beach Resort in Ucluelet for less than $5 million

Islanders want BC Ferries to follow order that lets residents board before tourists

For ferry-dependent communities, ferries are often the sole practical lifeline to work, school or medical appointments.

Washington’s NFL team drops ‘Redskins’ name after 87 years

The franchise was given the name back in 1933, when it was still in Boston

Genetic detectives begin work to trace spread of COVID-19 in Canada

The kinds of genetic technology being used for this project did not exist when SARS hit Canada in 2003

Most Read