Petersburg mayor to treasurer: Resign immediately - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Petersburg mayor to treasurer: Resign immediately

Petersburg Treasurer Kevin Brown (Source: NBC12) Petersburg Treasurer Kevin Brown (Source: NBC12)

Petersburg residents and the city's mayor are calling for accountability after the mayor asked for Treasurer Kevin Brown to step down. It comes as auditors are reviewing their findings, following a probe into possible fraud in the treasurer's office.

On Tuesday, city leaders drafted a resignation letter for Brown. All he has to do is sign his name if he chooses. Brown says he doesn't mind stepping down, but he says he wants to retire rather than resign.

"Were you here when (the money) first went missing?" one resident asked Brown.

"No," Brown said.

"Then we need to trace back to when you first came. Before you came, ask that person, 'Where did the money go?' It doesn't just disappear," the resident said.

“How about the $2,500 you admitted to taking?" another resident asked.

"What about it?" Brown asked.

"Where did it go?" the resident asked.

"I don't know,” Brown said.

Petersburg taxpayers questioned Brown outside City Hall on the very day the mayor called for his removal.

"We are asking the treasurer to do the right thing, to do what is right for the citizens of Petersburg and resign immediately," Mayor Sam Parham said.

Sources say Brown admitted to stealing money from his office. It allegedly happened as auditors poured through the treasurer's records.

"To be very clear, did you steal money from the office?” NBC 12 asked.

"No," he responded.

Some city leaders feel otherwise, although at a press conference Tuesday, those representing Petersburg wouldn't say it.

"No one's been proven innocent or guilty. That's why the public wants to know why would you make such a strong statement to say, ‘We want him to step down?'" NBC 12 asked Councilman Charles Cuthbert.

"I understand the desire for more detail, but all we can say at this time without jeopardizing the ongoing investigation is that we look forward to the day that the results of the investigation are presented to the public,” Cuthbert responded.

"I hope that at the end of this, everything will go forward for Petersburg, and we can really look up and see the progress that we've made," Brown said.

"Where did the money go? It's in somebody pocket. They need to be held accountable,” a taxpayer told Brown.

The Petersburg Police Department is not involved with this investigation.

Virginia State Police is taking the lead, and the Commonwealth's attorney's office is being kept in the loop in the event there's a need for charges.

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