Prince George’s County Council Chairwoman Ingrid Turner who basically owes her gavel to Leslie Johnson released the below statement in response to her plea of guilty to federal charges of corruption. The statement does not call on her friend and sorority sister to step down but restated the charter process for filling the seat when she does. Both Johnson and Turner are AKA members as well as their younger sorority sister Karen Toles. Johnson and Toles joined with Turner, Council members Will Campos and Obie Patterson to deny then-Vice Chairwoman Andrea Harrison her bid to become chair last year just weeks after Johnson was arrested by federal agents. Campos, Toles, Turner, and Patterson are the only four members not to call on Leslie Johnson to not assume office last December after she was arrested. Council members Franklin, Lehman, Harrison, and Olson all called on Johnson not to take office last December. Turner is the first county official to respond to today’s news. There has been no comment from Executive Rushern Baker or the other council members.
UPDATED- County Executive Rushern Baker has called on Leslie Johnson to resign before her October 13th sentencing hearing saying “I believe the process of healing should not be delayed or deferred,” according to TBD News Anchor Bruce Depuyt.
We’ve also heard from Prince George’s County Democratic Central Committeeman Salome Peters who said “If I were Leslie Johnson, I would have resigned a long time ago.
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday, June 30, 2011
|CONTACT: Karen Campbell
|Statement – COUNCIL CHAIR INGRID M. TURNER REGARDING STATUS OF COUNCIL MEMBER LESLIE JOHNSON|
Today is a difficult day. Council Member Johnson has pled guilty to a felony. After she has commenced her sentence, she will no longer be a qualified voter under Maryland Election Law and must then forfeit her office pursuant to Section 310 of the Prince George’s County Charter.
Once a vacancy exists on the County Council and pursuant to the County Charter, the County Council must provide for a Special Election to fill the vacancy.
The Council remains focused on its work serving the people of Prince George’s County. There is much to be done and we will continue to focus our efforts on our legislative priorities and work in the best interests of County residents.
All legislative powers of Prince George’s County are vested in the County Council. The County Council sits as the District Council on zoning and land use policy, and as the Board of Health to govern and guide health policy. The County Council meets as a legislative body on Tuesdays in the Council Hearing Room on the first floor of the County Administration Building in Upper Marlboro. For more information on the Prince George’s County Council, please visit www.princegeorgescountymd.gov
County Administration Building — Upper Marlboro, Maryland 20772