Westlake will resign from Legislature

Rep. Dean Westlake, D-Kiana, says he will resign from his seat in the Alaska Legislature in the wake of accusations of sexual harassment by several women.

“Some people are angry with me; or are disappointed,” Westlake said in a statement issued Dec. 15. “I am too.”

“To the women who came forward, thank you for telling your story. I am inspired by your bravery and I am sorry for the pain I have caused.”

Westlake also apologized to his constituents, saying he was sorry he had let them down.

“These allegations do not reflect who I am, nor who I want to be,” he said. “I will learn from this experience and be a better man because of it.”

State Democratic leaders had asked Westlake to resign earlier in the week, after the Anchorage Daily News printed an article detailing allegations of sexual harassment from current and former legislative aides. Initially Westlake refused to resign, then issued a statement saying that it was with a heavy heart that he would be resigning.