Christopher Barry (Facebook Photo)
Marion C. Barry, known as Chris, was ordered by D.C. Magistrate Judge Rainey R. Brandt on June 25 to spend 15 days in the D.C. Jail for violating probation after he was arrested for driving on a revoked license.
On June 24, the Rev. Anthony Motley was sentenced to two years of unsupervised probation for financial fraud by D.C. Superior Court Judge Yvonne M. Williams.
Barry will start serving his term on July 3, a Friday, and will be released on July 5, a Sunday. This rotation will continue for approximately six weeks.
Barry apologized to Brandt for his legal circumstances. “I am disappointed to come before the court under these conditions,” Barry said with his attorney, Fred Cooke, standing beside him. “My character is being questioned and I don’t like that. These court proceedings make me look a lot worse than which I am.”
Barry said that his probation in the District should not have been revoked because he has been in compliance with D.C. Superior Court directives. “I am not special and I am not above the law,” he said.
Barry owns a small construction firm and was a candidate in the April 28 Ward 8 D.C. Council member special elections to replace his late father, who died in November 2014. Barry is also on probation in Virginia for a drug charge in 2013. He has indicated publicly that he may challenge D.C. Council member LaRuby May (D-Ward 8) in the June 2016 Democratic Party primary.
Motley admitted his guilt in Superior Court in April and in an exclusive interview with the AFRO in May. Court documents obtained by the AFRO show Motley was ordered to pay back $52,063 and perform 200 hours of community service in addition to the unsupervised probation sentence.
Motley, who attended the hearing with his attorney Rodney Mitchell, has been a community and political activist for over three decades. Mitchell said that Motley’s sentence was fair.
“It is the bare minimum that he could have gotten,” Mitchell said. “It is what we agreed to.”
As a result of his conviction, Motley’s participation in key Ward 8 organizations has been curtailed. Philip Pannell, executive director of the Anacostia Coordinating Council, in a text, told the AFRO that Motley stepped down as the chairman of the faith committee last month.
Natalie Williams, president of the Ward 8 Democrats, confirms that Motley is no longer the head of the organization’s committee that deals with political issues. “We had a conversation and mutually agreed that he should step down,” Williams said.
Anthony Lorenzo Green, who serves as chairman of the 8B advisory neighborhood commission, said that he thinks Barry has the chance to redeem himself publicly. “Christopher Barry has no family because his mother and father are dead and he has no siblings,” Green said. “He has lived as the son of a great mayor of D.C. and only he knows what that is like. Christopher has the support of the city in terms of getting himself together.”
However, Green is not so sure about Motley. “Only he can answer for his actions and only he can redeem himself,” he said.