At a little after 9 p.m., Councilmember Marion Barry spokesperson Natalie Williams began another hastily scheduled press conference in front of the Wilson Building by thanking the U.S. Attorney’s Office for dropping the stalking charge against the councilmember. Prosecutors had announced three hours earlier that they would not press on with the stalking case. “Our hearts are full tonight with thanks,” Williams said. “We are grateful that the U.S. Attorney’s Office has seen fit to not charge Mr. Barry.”
Barry had been charged with stalking Donna Watts-Brighthaupt over the July 4 weekend. The arrest had since provoked a series of press conferences and embarrassing disclosures concerning Barry’s troubled relationship with Watts-Brighthaupt. The disclosures included bizarre hotel fights and audio tapes showing how obsessed Barry had become with his ex-girlfriend. Yet to be clarified is how Barry came to secure lucrative contract work for Watts-Brighthaupt.
Williams stated that Barry would answer questions about the the payments tomorrow. She also said that they would be able to provide the documents (contracts, e-mails, etc.) proving that the councilmember had acted properly. She insisted that the nothing Barry had done was illegal.
After Williams finished reading from her prepared text, she took a few questions from reporters. The first question concerned the audio tapes.
“This is over,” Williams declared. But it wasn’t. She went on to argue that the tapes only proved that Barry and Watts-Brighthaupt were in a romantic relationship.
Williams later added that “Barry is not disappointed” by his behavior heard and referenced on the audio tapes. She refused to address Barry’s actions at the Democratic National Convention when he kicked Watts-Brighthaupt out of his hotel room after she claims she refused to give him a blowjob. “They’re two adults,” she’d only say.
As to how Watts-Brighthaupt got the contract work from Barry’s office, Williams isn’t quite clear on all the details. She says she doesn’t know if the ex-girlfriend even went through any interview process. “I have no idea how that transpired,” she admitted.
Earlier this evening, City Desk interviewed Watts-Brighthaupt on the U.S. Attorney’s Office decision.
*photos by Darrow Montgomery.