Mayor Wharton opens up on Robert Lipscomb sex scandal

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. --In his first sit down interview with WREG since the Robert Lipscomb sex scandal broke, Mayor A C Wharton was on Live at 9 responding to the way his administration has handled the investigation.

"Some say that was too quick. Others say you didn't move quick enough. The key thing to remember here, as I know it now, all of this happened before I got there. All of these alleged incidents," he told Alex Coleman and Marybeth Conley.

Last week the City of Memphis announced nine people had come forward alleging sexual abuse by Lipscomb when they were underage.

The initial complaint was announced on August 31, with one accuser saying Police were aware of his claims back in 2010, but didn't do anything about it.

"I didn't get anything when Director Godwin was there, but anything I received started when the individual called my office and within hours I was talking with him personally, not through intermediaries, but through him," said Wharton.

Lipscomb resigned as head of the Housing and Community Development and was suspended from the Memphis Housing Authority, but there were questions about the future of several major projects without the city's key deal maker.

"I am not going to sit here and minimize, Mr. Lipscomb was an integral part of all these projects," said Mayor Wharton. "But fortunately there were other people working with him, outside consultants and all."

Despite claims of Lipscomb having two much power at City Hall, Wharton dismissed those critics.

He did however say changes would be made for both M.H.A. and the H.C.D.

"Ask them was it too much power when they're getting what they wanted? What are we going to get out of that now? I will say I do not intend to replicate that situation again. MHA will be MHA and HCD will be HCD," he said.

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