L.A. Council Member Nury Martinez Resigns After Leak of Racist Remarks, Will Take Time to 'Reflect'

"While I take the time to look inwards and reflect, I ask that you give me space and privacy," Martinez said in her statement Wednesday, announcing her decision to step down

Los Angeles, CA - August 30: Council President Nury Martinez motion to appoint Heather Hutt as an interim council member for the 10th District, failed to receive the 10 votes required for a public hearing at City Hall on Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2022 in Los Angeles, CA. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Photo: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times via Getty

Los Angeles City Council member Nury Martinez announced her resignation from her seat on Council District 6 two days after she stepped down from her post as president. The move came following the release of an audio recording in which she made racist remarks about the Black child of a white council member.

"It is with a broken heart that I resign my seat for Council District 6, the community I grew up in and my home," she said in a lengthy press release Wednesday, according to multiple outlets.

District 6 includes communities in the central and eastern regions of San Fernando Valley such as Van Nuys, Arleta, North Hollywood and Sun Valley neighborhoods.

Noting that she was "the first Latina Council President," she said she "strived to serve with compassion and to give a larger platform to the communities I felt had been left behind."

To her constituents, Martinez, 49, said, "Serving you has been a privilege and one that I don't give up lightly." She added, "I hope you stay engaged and continue to fight for your fair share of the city's resources. It's hard to say goodbye, but please know that I was in this fight for you."

She also apologized to her staff, saying, "This is no reflection on you."

After thanking her family for their support, she ended with a note for "all little Latina girls across this city," saying, "I hope I've inspired you to dream beyond that which you can see."

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She concluded, "While I take the time to look inwards and reflect, I ask that you give me space and privacy."

Representatives from L.A. City Council did not immediately return PEOPLE's request for comment.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Martinez made disparaging marks about how white council member Mike Bonin treated his Black son as an "accessory" in a meeting from approximately one year ago.

In the leaked video, Martinez also described Bonin's son as "Parece changuito," or "like a monkey," reported the LA Times.

"They're raising him like a little White kid," Martinez continued, according to a leak on Reddit. "I was like, 'This kid needs a beatdown. Let me take him around the corner and then I'll bring him back."'

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 20, 2016 - Los Angeles City Council member Nury Martinez, the only woman serving on the city council and the first female Hispanic member in a quarter century listens during a council meeting Wednesday, January 20, 2016. Martinez representing the 6th district was elected in 2013 to succeed Tony Cardenas,[ who vacated his seat to become U.S. House Representative for California's 29th congressional district. (Photo by Al Seib/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Al Seib/Los Angeles Times via Getty

After stepping down from her leadership post Monday, Martinez took responsibility for her actions and apologized, noting "there are no excuses for those comments," The New York Times reported.

Three members of Martinez's council called for her to resign after the recording from Los Angeles City Hall was leaked Sunday. It is also proving to be an incendiary topic ahead of the coming Nov. 8 elections.

"We are appalled, angry and absolutely disgusted that Nury Martinez attack our son with horrific racist slurs, and talked about her desire to psychically harm him," Bonin and his partner, Sean Arian, wrote on social media after the leak was made public. "It's vile abhorrent and utterly disgraceful. The City Council needs to remove her as Council President immediately, and she needs to resign from office."

On Sunday, Martinez issued a statement apologizing for her comments.

"In a moment of intense frustration and anger, I let the situation get the best of me and I hold myself accountable for these comments. For that I am sorry," she said, reported NBC News.

"The context of this conversation was concern over the redistricting process and concern about the potential negative impact it might have on communities of color," she added at the time. "My work speaks for itself. I've worked hard to lead this city through its most difficult time."

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