The rise and fall of Charles Pugh

Former Detroit City Council president expected to receive plea deal Wednesday

DETROIT - With former Detroit City Council president Charles Pugh expected to receive a plea deal Wednesday, Local 4 took a look at the rise and fall of the 45-year-old.

TIMELINE: Charles Pugh criminal sexual conduct case


Local 4's Sandra Ali looked back at Pugh's rise.

Metro Detroiters watched Pugh's meteoric rise as he grew up on the city's west side. People saw him as an underdog, and in his early days, things definitely weren't easy.

Pugh talked openly about his early days, including when his mother was murdered by her drug-dealing boyfriend in the early 70s. He also talked about finding his brother lying on the floor after his brother committed suicide because he lost his job.

He graduated from Murray Wright High School and became a household name around Detroit working in television.

"Part of (Pugh's) charisma, that freshness, is shaped by somebody who pulled themselves up by the bootstraps, literally and figuratively," said Sheila Cockrel, former Detroit City Council member.

You can learn all about Pugh's rise in the video below.


Then, there was the fall.

In part two of the Pugh saga, Sandra looked at the first signs of trouble.

There was the February 2010 crash in a city-owned car, an incident Pugh hid until the following week.

Various other red flags popped up in the following years, but it was in June 2013 when the disturbing allegations of sexual abuse arose. A teenage boy came forward and claimed Pugh seduced him.

When word got out, Pugh disappeared in the middle of the night.

"To just walk away, for me, looking at it as a lifelong Detroiter, it's like letting everybody down," Cockrel said.

Pugh was stripped of his political duties in disgrace.

Last year, more accusers started coming forward, one by one, all with a similar story of Pugh seducing them as teenagers.

Authorities brought Pugh back to Detroit, where he faces charges of criminal sexual conduct.

You can watch the full story of Pugh's fall below.

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