Catherine Elizabeth Pugh (born March 10, 1950) is an American former politician who served as the 51st mayor of Baltimore from 2016 to 2019. She resigned from office amid a scandal that eventually led to criminal charges, three years in prison and three years probation.Pugh entered in Maryland politics in 1999, when she was elected to the Baltimore City Council. She subsequently held office in the Maryland House of Delegates and the Maryland Senate, serving as the Majority Leader from 2015 to 2016. She first ran for mayor in 2011 and lost the primary to Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. Pugh ran again in 2016 and won the primary against former mayor Sheila Dixon. Pugh then won the mayoral election on November 8, 2016, with 57% of the popular vote, and took office on December 6, 2016. She was Baltimore's third consecutive female mayor. In April 2019, Pugh announced she was taking an indefinite leave of absence to recover from pneumonia. The announcement coincided with a scandal over a "self-dealing" arrangement in which organizations purchased large quantities of Pugh's books in exchange for contracts with the city. On May 2, 2019, Pugh resigned as mayor amid the book scandal and on November 20, 2019, she was indicted by a grand jury on eleven counts, including tax evasion, fraud and conspiracy in connection with the book transactions.
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