BALTIMORE (WJZ) — City hall was rocked by the announcement of former mayor Catherine Pugh’s indictment.

It’s been nearly seven months since federal agents were walking out of City Hall with boxes of materials as it kicked off this investigation against then-mayor Pugh. She resigned a week later.

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Three men running for mayor — Brandon Scott, Jack Young and T.J. Smith — addressed it.

Young, of course: took over as mayor back in April when Pugh took a leave of absence.

He was asked about it and read a prepared statement before talking about ethics reform.

“We’re all heartbroken and completely disappointed by today’s news and I pray for former mayor Pugh, and I’m focused on helping our city to heal,” Young said.

Scott addressed it after this morning’s Board of Estimates meeting.

“To have it happen in the midst of crime that is unyielding in Baltimore city, on the heels of years of having crime, to also have another mayor now taken out of office because of corruption, that shakes the fabric of the trust between the community and public officials,” Scott said.

“This is another unfortunate embarrassment for the city of Baltimore. Sadly, it distracts from the other real concerns we have in our city. Instead of focusing on violence reduction, educational investments, business growth, and community development, we are once again talking about someone in a leadership role being investigated and charged with corruption,” T.J. Smith said. “This, hopefully, is the beginning of closure in a sad chapter in Baltimore’s history. I am confident that better days lie ahead for Baltimore. We deserve ethical leadership who we can trust and is above reproach.”

Governor Larry Hogan said it’s unacceptable when a public official violates the public trust.

“The people of Baltimore, and all Marylanders, should be able to have confidence in the honesty and character of the people they elect to office. It is completely unacceptable anytime a public official violates the public trust. That’s why I pledged to put an end to business as usual, clean up the mess, and restore integrity in government,” Hogan said. “Our efforts have resulted in the enactment of sweeping ethics reforms, and hundreds of indictments. We will continue to fight hard to root out corruption and wrongdoing wherever it takes place.”

Marylanders also responded to the indictment of former Mayor Pugh.

Baltimore resident Roberta Hall said she is losing faith.

“I hope they give her time the average person would get,” Hall said.

Local resident Gary Adams said, “it’s the greatest travesty ever committed by a politician.”

From Pennsylvania Station to Belvedere Square to Penn and North- similar reaction from residents across Baltimore.

“It’s a shame that she chose to be so dishonest and gave Baltimore a bad name,” one resident told WJZ.

That briefing room where Young holds his weekly press conferences is the same location where Pugh held that infamous press event back in March, where she laid out baby clothing and tried explaining her deals with the University of Maryland Medical System.

Ava-joye Burnett

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