West Hollywood Mayor John Duran said he was ceding his job as Mayor for health reasons amid sexual harassment allegations which prompted him to step down from his longtime post as board chairman of the Los Angeles Gay Men’s Chorus in early February.
Wrote Duran on Facebook: “Blood clots are dangerous and something I have had to contend with for over 20 years. I take them very seriously because they cause strokes, heart attacks and have taken a couple of close friends of mine recently.”
“I continue to work with my doctors to try and get my blood and body in the right balance,” he continued. “I am supposed to slow down to half speed and rest for the next 30 days. I was in the hospital for one week and that did help me slow down since I couldn’t get very far with an IV in my arm.”
“I am handing the Mayor’s gavel to my friend John D’Amico as the Mayor Pro Tem to fill the remaining two months of my Mayor’s term,” he added. “I am not resigning from council and will complete this term which expires in November of 2020. My sobriety and God come first. My health comes next. And then my love of family and dear friends. I have my priorities in the right order.”
Multiple current or former chorus members told the Los Angeles Times that they were victims of Duran’s harassment. Singers Brian Phillip Nichoalds and Jason Tong said Duran groped them. Duran was also accused of inappropriate comments. Tong said he reported the incident to leaders within the Gay Men’s Chorus, alleging that Chorus management “supported somebody who wielded power, rather than somebody who is vulnerable and needs community.”
“Duran said he was made aware of only one allegation, Tong’s, and an independent investigator found no corroborating evidence to validate the accusation,” the L.A. Times reported.