Rhoton Calls on Lawrence Mayor to Resign
Her comments come after two of the mayor's officials were indicted.
Karin Rhoton, Republican candidate for state representative of the 14th Essex District, reacted to yesterday's indictments against Lawrence Mayor William Lantigua's former chief of staff and deputy police chief by calling for Lantigua to step down.
“The charges announced yesterday of extortion, bribery, conspiracy and fraud are serious and are of grave concern to me,” Rhoton said. “In addition,District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett noted that Leonard Degnan acted ‘on behalf of Mayor William Lantigua’. That statement to me is most troubling.”
Lenny Degnan of North Andover, Lantigua's former chief of staff, was indicted on charges including: solicitation of a bribe with corrupt intent; knowing solicitation of a bribe; unlawful use of official position; conspiracy; and extortion. Prosecutors allege that in 2009 and 2010, Degnan used his position as Lantigua's chief of staff a trash disposal contractor to donate a trash truck to the Dominican Republic.
Also indicted was Lawrence Deputy Police Chief Melix Bonilla, accused of fraudulently transferring ownership of 13 Lawrence Police vehicles that belonged to an automotive sales agency with a close affiliation to Mayor William Lantigua.
“It is time for Mayor Lantigua to serve the city’s best interests, and step aside,” Rhoton said. “Lawrence is a good city and it is time for a new chapter. The residents of Lawrence deserve to be put first. Mayor Lantigua should do the right thing and resign.”