Local News

City Leader: Nifong's Decision to Resign a Positive Step Forward

Posted June 15, 2007 11:26 p.m. EDT
Updated June 16, 2007 7:34 a.m. EDT

— “I’m going to resign as District Attorney of Durham.”

Not long after Mike Nifong uttered those words at his North Carolina State Bar ethics trial Friday, at least one city leader said it was the right move to help the community heal.

“I think Mike’s decision is a positive step forward for the citizens of Durham and all those involved in this case to move us forward towards a resolution,” said City Council member Mike Woodard.

Nifong acknowledged the community’s strife as he spoke at his trial.

“My community has suffered enough. They suffered as a result in some respects because of my actions in this case,” he said.

Durham Mayor Bill Bell said he had “no reaction” to Nifong’s announcement that he planned to leave office.

“I heard it and Mike has to do what he has to do. And the council has to do what we have to do,” Bell said.

The council plans to move forward with an independent investigation into the Durham Police Department's handling of the case. This week, the city council assembled a 12-member committee to take on that project.

“Our investigation is not tied to Mike’s future at all,” Woodard said. “It’s really tied more to the processes and actions of the police department.”

In the mean time, it will be up to the governor to officially name Nifong’s replacement.