PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona state senator facing child molestation charges who had been facing increasing pressure to step down is resigning.
Republican Senate President Karen Fann said Tuesday that Democratic Sen. Tony Navarette sent her an email saying he is resigning immediately.
The action came amid increasing bipartisan pressure on the Phoenix lawmaker to step down from his seat representing a Phoenix-area district.
Navarette was arrested last week by Phoenix police after a now-16-year-old boy came forward and said Navaratte had molested him starting when he was 12 or 13 years old and continuing until he was 15. He faces multiple charges and is free on $50,000 bond.
Navarette released the following statement Tuesday:
It has been my absolute honor and privilege to represent the communities of Arizona’s 30th District. Recently, serious allegations have been made against me. I adamantly deny all allegations that have been made and will pursue all avenues in an effort to prove my innocence. In doing so, I will be focusing the vast majority of my time and energy on my defense.
While I would love nothing more than to continue to serve the families of Arizona’s 30th District, I worry it will be impossible to give my constituents the full attention they deserve. Therefore, I must resign my post as Arizona State Senator today.