I just got off the phone with political consultant Larry Remer, who’s acting as spokesman for City Council District 3 candidate John Hartley.

Hartley, who earlier today pleaded no contest to committing a lewd act in public place as part of a plea agreement, has been silent since his March 27 arrest.

Here are his first words since then:

I want to apologize to the voters of the 3rd District. I made a mistake. I accept full responsibility for my actions. And I promise not to let it happen again.

I also want to say that I harbor no hard feelings towards the police, who were doing their job, or towards the women who complained, who care about our neighborhoods, or towards the press, who have been working to inform the public.

Having said all of that, I do not intend to answer any questions about this today or in the future.

I only hope that this one unfortunate lapse of judgment on my part does not overshadow the 25 years of genuine, hard work I have done to improve our neighborhoods. In the past, working together, we accomplished a great many things, including putting more cops on the streets, establishing community planning groups in every neighborhood, and winning District Elections.

I have been running for City Council for the past year — knocking on doors as many of you know. I would like to continue to serve our neighborhoods. But, if the voters do not believe I should represent them on the City Council, I will accept their judgment. But, if the voters can look past this mistake, I promise to fight as hard as I always have to put our neighborhoods first. Thus, I put my fate in the voters’ hands.

– John Hartley, 7 April 2008

Hartley’s consultant, Larry Remer, said Hartley plans to run and that the whole episode was a “stupid little thing.”

WILL CARLESS

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