For two-plus weeks, Brady Banks had kept public silence following his arrest on Feb. 16, when police charged the rookie Metro councilman with a misdemeanor charge for patronizing prostitution.
In the immediate aftermath of the arrest, Banks declined to return phone calls or respond to emails, and he skipped out early from a Metro Council meeting Feb. 21 as members were weighing a resolution calling for the resignation of embattled Davidson County Clerk John Arriola. That resolution passed.
Banks ended his silence with an interview with The City Paper that admittedly leaves some questions unanswered, but nonetheless represents Banks’ first statements following the arrests.
He told The City Paper: “I am so very sorry for the hurt I have caused my wife, family, friends and neighbors. I have damaged the most important relationships in my life. I am personally responsible for my actions and deserving of the criticism of my failure.”
Banks answered all questions The City Paper asked, but by prior agreement, his attorney Jonathan Farmer would not allow questions about the case ahead of his March 6 court date.
What’s been the most difficult part about the last two weeks?
The most difficult thing has been to begin the process of repairing the damage done to my relationships, especially with my wife, having to explain this failure to family and friends, and coming to grips with my actions.
I know your lawyer will not allow you to talk about the pending case. Excluding the event for which you have been charged, have you ever solicited a prostitute?
Less than 24 hours after your arrest, you resigned from your job at the governor’s Books From Birth Foundation. Do you plan to resign from your Metro Council seat or will you continue serving?
I have been dealing with what is most important — my wife and my family — and trying to get all the help I need to start rebuilding trust and healing my relationships. I plan to work as hard as I can to regain the respect and trust of the people I was elected to serve.
If you do continue to serve, how do you plan to regain the public’s trust, particularly the people who live in District 4?
I want to continue to work hard, do a good job and continue to listen to my neighbors and try to do what they elected me to do on the council. I have always wanted to serve people, and I want to continue to serve.
A constituent of yours has discussed launching a recall effort. What’s your response to that? Would you fight that effort?
A recall effort is an option for anyone. I understand that my neighbors are rightfully disappointed. But I intend to continue the job I was elected to do, and I will reach out and do everything in my power to regain their trust.
At last week’s council meeting, you showed up minutes after the meeting started but left before the meeting’s business concluded. Explain your appearance.
I was elected to do a job for the people of District 4. Part of that job is to represent them at council meetings. I take that very seriously. With regard to leaving before the end of the meeting, I didn’t think it was appropriate for me to participate in the end of the agenda given my situation.
Some have noted that you’re a graduate of Harvard Divinity School and that your wife is a minister. What’s your response to those who think you should be held to a higher standard?
My wife and I have come to an understanding about what is necessary in our relationship — forgiveness with an effort to make things right. That is who we are, that is how we have chosen to address this. I have asked Kristin for forgiveness, and she has offered it. We are praying together and are committed to staying together. I believe the standard I will hold myself to is to work as hard as I can to make things right.
Were you aware a Franklin Road Academy high school coach had been arrested the week before in a police prostitution sting?