LONDON (AP) — The widower of a slain British legislator has stepped down from two charities set up in her memory after allegations of sexual misconduct in the past were reported.
Brendan Cox said late Saturday night he had acted inappropriately and would leave his positions at the Jo Cox Foundation and the More in Common charity. Both were started after his wife Jo Cox was shot and stabbed to death by a far-right extremist during the Brexit referendum in 2016.
Brendan Cox said he wanted to apologize “deeply and unreservedly” for his past behavior while working at another charity.
“I do acknowledge and understand that during my time at Save the Children I made mistakes and behaved in a way that caused some women hurt and offense,” he said in the statement.
He promised to hold himself to “much higher standards” in the future.
This came after the Mail on Sunday published reports alleging sexual misconduct on his part. Brendon Cox called the newspaper’s allegations a “massive exaggeration.”
Jo Cox’s family Sunday offered support for Brendan Cox, praising him for taking responsibility for prior misdeeds. Her sister, Kim Leadbeater, said Cox “did the right thing” by admitting inappropriate behavior.
“As a family we will support Brendan as he endeavors to do the right thing by admitting mistakes he may have made in the past, and we respect him for doing so,” she said. “We all make mistakes. Brendan is a wonderful father and I have no doubt about the happiness he brought to Jo.”
Brendan has campaigned publicly for his wife’s beliefs since her death.
She was a Labour Party legislator opposed to Brexit — Britain’s departure from the European Union — who was killed by a far-right extremist who is serving a life sentence for murder.