Prince George’s Co. Council announces special election after member resigns, charged with felonies

After council member Jamel “Mel” Franklin resigned earlier this month, the Prince George’s County Council announced Tuesday that dates have been set for a special primary and general election to fill the at-large council seat.

The council said in a news release that the special primary election will take place on Aug. 6 and the special general election will take place on Nov. 5.

Aspiring council members must file a certificate of candidacy with the Board of Elections by next Friday, July 5, to run in the special election.

Franklin resigned after more than a decade spent in public service — first as a District 9 council member in 2010 before winning an at-large council seat in 2018.

Last week, Franklin was charged with multiple counts of felony theft scheme, embezzlement and perjury after prosecutors say he used campaign funds to pay for personal expenses, including cosmetic procedures for himself and a friend.

A spokesperson for the county council told WTOP that the reason why Franklin left his long-held seat was not shared.

Franklin suffered from undisclosed health issues before his resignation and was not involved with the council in person since December.

WTOP’s Thomas Robertson and Ivy Lyons contributed to this report.

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Emily Venezky

Emily Venezky is a digital writer/editor at WTOP. Emily grew up listening to and reading local news in Los Angeles, and she’s excited to cover stories in her chosen home of the DMV. She recently graduated from The George Washington University, where she studied political science and journalism.

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