Family accusing Charles Pugh of wrongdoing ask police to put investigation on hold; teen gets help

(WXYZ) - A new attorney representing the young man City Council President Charles Pugh mentored, says he and the family have asked the Madison Heights police to suspend its investigation until the young man involved has received psychological treatment.

Attorney Bill Seikaly, who is now representing the family, told 7 Action News today that he is confident that his client is a victim of Pugh's and that there are other victims out there and he wants them to come forward.

The young man's mother contacted 7 Action News weeks ago over concerns that she had about gifts Pugh secretly had purchased for her son. They include a $350 cell phone, new dress clothes, and about $250 in cash.

Pugh has denied any wrongdoing, but has been in hiding for weeks. He had his pay and power stripped last week by Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, and has not been charged with any crime.

Seikaly said in an interview with 7 Action News that his number one priority is the health of his client. Here is a partial transcript of our interview Monday afternoon with 7 Action News Investigator Ross Jones:  

"This kid's never going to be well again. This is going to be with him the rest of his life," said Seikaly. "That's one of the consistent patterns we see in all of these cases. Once these kids are the victim, they're never well again."

Seikaly also said, "Victims tend to blame themselves in these situations. The people who do these kinds of things are always the most popular, beloved teacher or adult around. That's how they get close to kids.  So they feel guilty, they get a lot of pressure from peers."

"And what makes you so confident that there are other people who have yet to come forward?" asked Jones of Seikaly.

"Well, I've been involved in a lot of these cases, and it's always been true.  The investigation that we have conducted thus far leads me to the conclusion that this case is not dramatically different," he said.

"Are you surprised at all by Mr. Pugh's silence?" Jones also asked Seikaly.

"No," he said.

"Typical?" asked Jones.

"Casebook," said Seikaly, who added, "Usually people who do such things are silent or they deny and then get a lawyer who tells them to be silent.  It's kind of textbook that they say nothing."

Pugh has disappeared since the allegations came to light.

The Madison Heights Police issued a statement today that says they have agreed to honor the family's request and postpone taking a statement from the teen. The statement also says that the police department has not received any other complaints about Pugh and that it will not be forwarding the case to the Oakland County Prosecutor.

READ THE ENTIRE STATEMENT BELOW:

On June 29, 2013, an 18-year-old male, accompanied by his mother, filed a complaint at the Madison Heights Police Department. The complaint alleges that Charles Pugh had inappropriate contact with the 18-year-old male while in the City of Madison Heights. The incident reported is alleged to have occurred between May 29, 2013, and May 31, 2013.

Investigators have met with Attorney William Seikaly of Seikaly & Stewart Law Office. William Seikaly, as a representative for the victim's family, requested that our department postpone interviewing the victim of the alleged inappropriate contact. William Seikaly states that the mother of the victim has very serious concerns about the psychological and emotional impact this process is having on her son. We will honor the family's request in postponing the interview with the victim.

However, in order to do a complete and thorough investigation it is necessary to speak with the victim. Our hope is that, in due time, the victim will be able to comply with our request. As of this time, we will not be forwarding the complaint to the Oakland County Prosecutor's Office.

The Madison Heights Police Department has not received, nor do we have knowledge of, any additional complaints against Charles Pugh. We thank you for your patience and request that you honor the [family's] request to not be contacted. 

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