Nashville mayor Megan Barry: I had an affair with my former head of security

Nashville mayor Megan Barry on Wednesday admitted to having an affair with the former head of her security detail.

The man in question, retired Metro Nashville Police Department officer Sgt. Robert Forrest, subsequently admitted to having the affair with Barry.

“Today, I have acknowledged publicly that I have engaged in an extramarital affair with the former head of my security detail,” Barry, elected in 2015, said in a statement. “I accept full responsibility for the pain I have caused my family and his. I am so sorry to my husband Bruce, who has stood by me in my darkest moments and remains committed to our marriage, just as I am committed to repairing the damage I have done.”

PHOTO: Retired Metro Nashville Police Department officer Sgt. Robert Forrest in an undated photo.WKRN via Nashville.gov
Retired Metro Nashville Police Department officer Sgt. Robert Forrest in an undated photo.

Forrest, a 32-year veteran of the police force, retired on Wednesday just hours before Barry released the statement, according to WKRN.

“I have had an outstanding career and have enjoyed coming to work each day,” Forrest said in his resignation letter to Captain Michael Alexander.

Forrest made no reference to the affair in his resignation letter but he later issued a statement through his lawyer, in which he confirmed the affair with Barry.

“I deeply regret that my professional relationship with Mayor Barry turned into a personal one,” Forrest said. “This has caused great pain for my wife, my family, friends and colleagues. At no time did I ever violate my oath as a police office or engage in actioons that would abuse the public trust.”

PHOTO: Nashville mayor Megan Barry walks to her sons visitation in July 2017 with her husband Bruce (left) and Sgt. Robert Forrest, the retired police officer whom admitted, along with the mayor, that they had an affair. WKRN
Nashville mayor Megan Barry walks to her son’s visitation in July 2017 with her husband Bruce (left) and Sgt. Robert Forrest, the retired police officer whom admitted, along with the mayor, that they had an affair.

Barry and her husband’s only child, 22-year-old Max Barry, died in July of an apparent drug overdose. Forrest was the one to inform Barry of her son’s death, according to ABC affiliate WKRN.

Barry apologized in her statement to the people of Nashville for her actions and said she remains “firmly committed” to serving them as mayor.

“I knew my actions could cause damage to my office and the ones I loved, but I did it anyway. I must hold myself to the highest standard of which the voters deserve to expect. Please know that I’m disappointed in myself but also understand that I’m a human and that I made a mistake,” she said. “While I regret any distractions that will be caused by my actions, I remain firmly committed to working hard to serve the people of Nashville now and into the future.”

Barry added, “In the weeks and months to come, I will work hard to earn your forgiveness and earn back your trust.”

ABC News’ Kevin Kraus contributed to this report.

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