Philadelphia Police Foundation board member steps down over sexual misconduct allegations

Closeup of a police vehicle in Philadelphia

File photo: Shown is a police vehicle in Philadelphia, Thursday, June 24, 2021. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

A member of the Philadelphia Police Foundation’s board has resigned over allegations that he pressured two young people to have sex with him.

Sean C. Edwards stepped down from the board Friday, according to a statement from the foundation’s executive director, Eric Cushing.

“The Philadelphia Police Foundation was recently made aware of allegations against a Board Member, Sean Edwards,” Cushing wrote in an email. “After speaking with Mr. Edwards, we mutually agreed for him to resign from the Philadelphia Police Foundation Board, effective immediately.”

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Allegations detailed in a petition on Change.org claim that Edwards met an 18-year-old and 19-year-old in a bar this week, then pressured the two to have sex with him at his office. The petition alleges that he may have roofied them. Fearing sexual assault, they fled the office before any sexual activities occurred.

Edwards is president of Rittenhouse Communications Group.

“Sean Edwards voluntarily resigned from his position on the Philadelphia Police Foundation Board so that the inaccurate and defamatory allegations against him do not distract from the important work of the organization,” Dan Gross, a spokesperson for Rittenhouse Communications, wrote in an emailed statement. “Sean wholeheartedly denies striking or attempting to drug either of these individuals.”

The petition called for Edwards to be removed from the Philadelphia Police Foundation board and had over a thousand signatures as of Friday afternoon.

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