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St. Louis board president resigns after indictments

St. Louis Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed has resigned his post five days after federal charges were announced against him and two others for allegedly accepting bribes and misusing their offices for personal gain.

Reed announced his resignation Tuesday, saying in a statement that he could not serve constituents and juggle “my current legal challenges,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. Board vice president Joe Vollmer said he will assume the role acting board president until the the Nov. 8 general election, when voters will select someone to fill the role until Reed’s term expires in April and another election for the four-year term is held.

Last week, federal prosecutors revealed that Reed and former aldermen Jeffrey Boyd and John Collins-Muhammad were all indicted on May 25. Collins-Muhammad resigned days ahead of the indictment and Boyd resigned Friday, a day after the indictments were announced.

All three have pleaded not guilty.

They all face two bribery-related charges. Collins-Muhammad also has been indicted on one count of bribery/wire fraud. Boyd faces a separate two-count wire fraud indictment alleging he sought $22,000 in insurance claims for damage to vehicles that he didn’t own.

The main indictments allege Collins-Muhammad, Reed and Boyd helped a small-business owner receive tax abatements and other financial breaks in exchange for bribes. The indictment also alleges that Reed asked the business owner for $20,000 in campaign cash as part of an effort to redraw the ward map to protect Collins-Muhammad from activists who wanted to recall him from office.