In 2007, 40-year-old Jeff Simpson initiated a civil childhood sexual abuse case against then-state legislator Ed Murray for allegedly molesting Simpson when he was a teen. Brian Williams, Simpson’s lawyer, dropped the case the following year because of a statute of limitations issue. But before Williams dropped the case, the lawyer said he found corroborating evidence for Simpson’s story from Lloyd Anderson, a 51-year-old man who currently lives in Florida.
Like Simpson, Anderson claimed that Murray paid him cash in exchange for sexual favors when he was a teenager. Simpson and Anderson say they met at the Parry Center for Children, where Murray once worked.
Anderson’s story was reported in the Seattle Times, but he’s stayed out of the spotlight in recent days after the newest allegations—by a man who recently revealed himself to be Delvonn Heckard—were filed in King County Superior Court. Simpson told The Stranger that Anderson, who is a convicted sex offender, had been having a rough time with his story blowing up in the media. But on Tuesday evening, The Stranger received a call from a Florida number. It was Anderson, and he said that he was ready to talk.
Anderson told The Stranger that in the early ‘80s Murray coerced him into having dinner at his Portland apartment, where Murray allegedly paid Anderson for oral sex when Anderson was 17, below Oregon’s age of consent. Anderson claimed that Murray paid him for oral sex “quite a few times,” supplied weed and alcohol, and that Murray was forceful with him during these encounters.
In response to these claims, Katherine Heekin, one of Murray’s current lawyers as well as the lawyer who represented Murray in 2007 and 2008, said that she remembered Murray “did know of [Anderson] as another person at the Parry Center” (and as Jeff Simpson’s friend). Still, Heekin said, Murray never engaged in inappropriate conduct with Anderson. She said Anderson’s claims of sex abuse were false. Further, she added, Murray maintained a “no drug” policy when he had custody of Simpson, “so the idea that the mayor was supplying Anderson with marijuana and alcohol is outlandish.”
Anderson told The Stranger that he wants the truth to come out, for Ed Murray to acknowledge what he allegedly did, and for the mayor to resign.
“The mayor is not going to resign,” Heekin told The Stranger. “At some point, the accusers will recognize that the evidence does not favor them in the least and they will stop. As the evidence showed in 2007 and 2008, there is zero evidence to support what they say, and there is plenty of evidence to say what they say is false.”
Heekin also forwarded a memo written by a paralegal from an interview Anderson took with the firm representing Simpson in 2007, presenting the memo as evidence that his story is not credible.
Heekin noted that in the memo, Anderson said he came to the Parry Center when he was 7, but said that based on his age, would have arrived when he was closer to 11 or 12. Heekin also said that, in the 2007 interview, the paralegal states that Anderson remembers Jeff Simpson telling him about abuse that started after Murray had become Simpson’s caretaker. But, Heekin added, Simpson alleges the abuse started when he was 13, before Murray became Simpson’s caretaker—so this, she said, is another inconsistency.
Besides those discrepancies in dates—which Anderson seems to struggle with to this day (he told us, for example, that he was about to turn 53, but public records say he's 51)—the paralegal's memo largely corroborates what Anderson told The Stranger this week.
The following is a condensed interview with Anderson, lightly edited for clarity. In it, Anderson describes what it’s been like to see new allegations surface after Jeff Simpson’s failed 2007 case and Simpson’s attempt to make his story public in 2008, as well as his own motivation for going public now. He became emotional at the mention of Jeff Simpson's alleged abuse, and in a later interview, criticized himself for "not saying something to someone" sooner.
How did you end up at the Parry Center?
They would not take care of me, my parents. I won't say couldn't. I'll say wouldn't. They had every chance to take care of us five kids, and they wouldn't. So we all got put in a foster home. And then I was abused in the foster home, physically and mentally, so I started doing things that would get me kicked out. I couldn't live there anymore. I couldn't live with the abuse. And yes, I got out, but unfortunately, I got sent to Parry Center and that’s where Jeff and I met and we became friends.
How old were you when you went to the Parry Center?
I think I was 8 or 9.
When did you meet Ed Murray?
Well, so I went through Parry Center, and my father was actually there for me until I turned about 14, and then all of the sudden he stopped. From what I learned, he just lost his job. He didn't tell me shit. He just stopped. So then they started to look for a foster home for me because I was supposedly supposed to move in with my dad, but that didn't work. They found a good foster home for me. Unfortunately, by then I was too far gone into the system. I really couldn't accept their love or anything. That's when Jeff and I sort of got contact again, briefly. I may have been 16. Jeff told me that Ed was messing with him. And you probably want to know about the sexual stuff.
Whatever you're comfortable telling me.
I remember [Jeff] just sitting and talking to me [about Ed allegedly molesting him] and of course when you're just that age you don't think there's anything you can do. And after that, we kind of let it go, you know, and a couple years later, I'm going to say when I'm 16 or 17, I saw Ed and he coerced me into coming over to the house under the pretenses that Jeff was there and we were supposed to have dinner. But Jeff was never there, and this is kind of really embarrassing to say, but you know, I had a girlfriend and I didn't have any money, and Ed offered me the money. And I figured if I could get money, I could take my girl out. So yes, I did perform sexual favors for him for money and for marijuana.
How much did he pay you?
I believe it was anywhere, to be exact I can't remember, between $15 and $30. It really varied on how much money he supposedly had.
And to go back to what you said—Jeff told you Ed was molesting him? Can you explain more what you meant by you didn’t think there was anything you could do?
He was telling me about Ed abusing him. We were just kids. What would we do? We were brought up in Parry Center. If anything happened to us it was like it didn't happen or whatever. But you got to remember, this is back in the late 70s, early 80s, and that's when nobody gave a shit about us.
How many times did it happen?
It was quite a few times, but I cannot tell you how many times. Remember, this was 35 years ago.
When did you stop seeing Ed?
It had to be late ‘83 or ‘84. After I turned 18, I said, “Unh uh, no way, no more.”
Why did you stop seeing him?
Jeff was never around. I think maybe I finally got smart and wised up and said, wait a minute, he invites me over to come and have dinner with Jeff and Jeff is never there. So I finally wised up to it. To be honest with you, I wasn't the brightest bulb.
Adults are supposed to take responsibility.
I don't know if you read or not, I am a convicted sex offender.
I did read that.
And it is the adult—the adult needs to take care of it, and I didn't at that time. I didn't. I do accept responsibility for that. I take full responsibility for that. But unfortunately the Seattle Times did misquote me. I was not charged on multiple cases, I was charged on two. It was not multiple, it was just two. [Editor’s note: The Seattle Times wrote that Anderson was charged on "several" offenses. Anderson was charged three times in 1998, but one of the charges was dropped. The first two counts were for lewd, lascivious behavior in the presence of Anderson’s wife’s niece, who was between 12 and 16 at the time, for which Anderson pleaded no contest. The third charge was for a “sexual assault by a custodian for a victim over 12,” and that charge was dropped.]
How did your alleged experience with Ed affect you after turned 18?
Periodically, I would have dreams about it, but I tried my best to block it out. And I did for a long time, until one day I got a call from Jeff Simpson. And that was back in 2008, I believe it was. And then it just brought everything back, and for the last eight years I have been going through hell. It just keeps coming up, I dream about it, I think about it all the time. The man was not nice. Even though he paid me and everything, the man was not nice. He was vicious.
What do you mean by not nice, vicious?
I was supposed to perform oral sex, but he was like really vicious about it. It was like hardcore oral sex and so it was, I mean, like pushing my head down and everything, almost violent. I wouldn't say it was violent, but I'd say it was damn close to it.
Did you ever tell him you didn't want to?
I don't remember if I did or not, to be honest with you. I know he was paying me money for it, and he did supply me with marijuana and alcohol. He had to get me into the position into where I would do it.
He would get you drunk first?
Well, yeah. Well, I would say "feeling pretty damn good," you know. And I was a weed smoker at the time. So he supplied the weed.
Did anyone pay you for sexual favors before Ed allegedly did?
Did you talk to counselors about it?
I have seen [community] counselors and I have brought it up, but it's not something I really got into. It's just too much, it's just too embarrassing, it's too much. I have a family and I have to deal with that. That comes first.
How did you find out about the new allegations?
I didn't find out until they called me a couple weeks ago. I believe Jeff might have told me. I really didn't pay any attention to [the Seattle Times’ reporting].
You mentioned you've been going through an emotional time lately. What does that mean?
I can't say I've been having nightmares, but I have had dreams. And you know, I wake up in the middle of the night kind of dealing with this and my wife kind of has a hard time understanding. She's trying to understand. And a lot of, um, when you blame yourself, “it's your own damn fault, you did it,” you know. You know, I've been dealing a lot with that and like I'm less of a man, and that's been happening a bit. And who'da think this would come up 35 years later, you know? But evidently it does. And then I have to deal with the fact that I am a sex offender. I would never use the statement, “Well the abused becomes the abuser,” but you know, I don't know. I just thank God that it didn't go any further than what it did, you know. I was accused of feeling a girl up and I just, thank God it didn't go any further than that,. I admitted my guilt for that and it's something I have to live with for the rest of my life.
What made you want to come forward now?
I just don't think that the person should get away with it. I did what I did, I admitted to what I did, and I think that if anybody in this world has done it, then he needs to come forward and they need to say, “Yeah, and I need to pay for what I did. I did what I did, I'm guilty, and I shouldn't have done it, and I need to take the consequences that come along with that,” you know, and that's something I think every person needs to do, especially in this particular kind of thing. Because it can wreck a person for their lives, you know. I mean, it screwed me up my whole life.
Ed says the accusations are politically motivated. Are you politically motivated?
I have absolutely no political anything. I am not Democratic, I'm not Republican. I'm not Independent, I am not political at all, any way shape or form.
How do you feel about gay marriage?
Well, if it makes them happy, you know, then I think that's alright. I am kind of a Christian and therefore the Bible does say something against that, but I'm like, well, hey, if it makes you happy, then, you know, okay.
Anything else you wished I'd asked?
I want him to know that I want him to resign, because this is not going to stop. We are going to continue to let the public know what he has done and the best thing for him would be for him to resign. Is this on the record?
Yes, it's all on the record.
I just think he just needs to, like, he's not a very good representative of the state of Washington. I don't think he's a good representative of any state, and I think it would probably be in everybody's best interest if he would not represent the state or anything. And that's probably about it. Hard feelings? Like I said, I am a Christian, and I do forgive. I won't forget, but I do forgive. And that's probably the only thing that's kept me alive this long because I do have forgiveness in my heart. I just don't feel like a person who has done this to people should represent a state or a city or whatever, I just don't think that that's the right thing. I do want to say that I forgive the man and that's pretty much it.
Did you follow the news when he became mayor? Did you follow his political rise?
Absolutely not. No, I did not. It took me five days just to read… When it all came out in the Seattle news, it took me five days to even look at it, because I was so nervous and so scared. I don't follow it and I'm really not interested. I'm telling my side of the story. I'm telling the truth and that's all that needs to be said.
One more thing, I have been happily married for 23 years. I have two children and I also am a happy grandfather. And my life is doing OK now. I did want to say that. I am a survivor and I have survived it. Other people don't. I pray that Ed's other victims can find some comfort.