Disgraced county Supervisor Nathan Fletcher will officially resign from his 4th District seat at 5 p.m. on May 15, his office announced Thursday.
The announcement follows Fletcher’s acknowledgement that he suffers from PTSD and admission of an affair with an employee of San Diego Metropolitan Transit System. The employee has filed a lawsuit accusing him of sexual harassment and assault.
“The strain on my wife and family over this past week has been immense and unbearable,” Fletcher said, referring to former Assembly member Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher.
“A combination of my personal mistakes plus false accusations has created a burden that my family shouldn’t have to bear. I will be resigning from the Board of Supervisors, effective at the end of my medical leave,” he said.
Fletcher, a Marine Corps veteran, is currently out of the state seeking medical treatment for PTSD.
According to official policy, the Board of Supervisors can fill the vacancy “by appointment, by calling for a special election, or by a combination of the two.”
The next regularly scheduled meeting of the board is on Tuesday, April 4.
Other members of the board did not immediately comment on the next steps following Fletcher’s resignation, but Vice Chair Terra Lawson-Remer vowed to “continue to move forward our transformative vision for a county that works for everyone.”
Meanwhile, the chairwoman of the San Diego County Democratic Party issued a 227-word statement on Fletcher’s plan to resign.
“In light of these troubling charges of sexual assault and harassment, Supervisor Fletcher’s decision to resign from the Board of Supervisors is appropriate,” said the chair, Becca Taylor.
“We must hold our leaders to a high standard of personal conduct, whether engaging government staff or the public at large. Anyone who has experienced the behavior alleged deserves accountability and healing.”
Among the first to announce a run for Fletcher’s seat is Marine Corps veteran Janessa Goldbeck, CEO of Vet Voice Foundation and a Democrat who ran for Congress in the district Sara Jacobs eventually won.
On Thursday, she tweeted: “I got in the fight for county supervisor to keep up the pace & make the progress San Diego needs — jobs, justice, safety.”
Meanwhile, the political fallout also threatened to ensnare Gonzalez Fletcher.
Carl DeMaio, chairman of the conservative political group Reform California, in a news release called on the labor leader to resign from her position as head of the California Labor Federation, “given the serious allegations contained in the lawsuit” adding that “she has lost all credibility to speak on labor law and workplace conditions in California.
Citing Figueroa’s lawsuit, Reform California stated that Gonzalez Fletcher is accused of making “threats of bullying, intimidation and defamatory legal action against a woman who claims her employer violated her employment rights under state labor law.”
“Should Gonzalez not voluntarily resign, the individual labor unions that comprise the California Labor Federation should remove her immediately from her post,” DeMaio said.
Updated 5:01 p.m. March 30, 2023