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Gray supporter departs from city job

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A campaign supporter of Mayor Vincent C. Gray who landed a city government job despite her failure to disclose a felony conviction is leaving her position, city officials said.

Cherita Whiting will depart from her position with the Department of Parks and Recreation, where she served as a special assistant earning $65,000, two city officials told The Washington Times on Monday.

The Times reported in February that despite holding previous positions as an advisory neighborhood commissioner, administrative assistant to D.C. Council member Phil Mendelson and applying for numerous other D.C. government jobs, she never disclosed a 2001 felony conviction for wire fraud on her job applications.

She is also involved in the controversial dismissal of a Metropolitan Police Department officer that involved her providing directly to Chief Cathy L. Lanier information about the officer's relationship with a drug dealer.

At a hearing last week, Department of Human Resources Director Judy Banks testified that Ms. Whiting was hired at the direction of Gerri Mason Hall, Mr. Gray's former chief of staff. Ms. Hall was recently fired in the wake of multiple and ongoing investigations into Mr. Gray's personnel practices.

Human resources officials say Ms. Whiting disclosed her conviction on a job application, a claim contrary to what Ms. Whiting herself told a reporter in February about a federal prison stint that resulted from her 2001 conviction: "Those who know, know, and those who didn't, I felt didn't need to."

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