Despite Lawsuits, Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small Gains NJ Governor’s Endorsement

Posted on: June 4, 2021, 01:47h. 

Last updated on: June 4, 2021, 02:19h.

Atlantic City Democratic Mayor Marty Small Sr. is facing serious legal allegations, but he has nonetheless received the backing of New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D).

Atlantic City Marty Small New Jersey
Atlantic City Marty Small is seen on the Boardwalk. The mayor is facing two lawsuits for alleged misconduct. (Image: AP)

Both Murphy and Small are up for reelection this November. The first-term governor holds a 57 percent approval rating, and political betting site PredictIt gives him a 90 percent chance of winning a second term. Small’s odds of securing his first four-year term are much longer. 

Since the 1970s, Atlantic City has become almost as known for its political corruptness as its slot machines and saltwater taffy. Small became mayor in the fall of 2019 after then-Mayor Frank Gilliam resigned after pleading guilty to wire fraud. 

Small is now facing his own allegations of wrongdoing. 

Last month, a federal lawsuit naming Small and his wife, La’Quetta, as defendants was brought by a mother. The mother alleges that her daughter was sexually abused by a relative of the Smalls inside their home. Kayan Frazier, the relative, pleaded guilty in February to one count of child exploitation involving child pornography and sexual abuse of a minor. 

The lawsuit claims that Frazier’s abuse of the girl lasted for three years, and that he was living with the Smalls at the time. The litigation alleges that Frazier, a former caseworker at the New Jersey Department of Child Protection and Permanency, sexually abused the girl at least once inside the Smalls’ home.

Mayor Alleged Threat

As the casino town begins its economic recovery from COVID-19, some officials believe Smith should be replaced with someone free of scandal.

If Marty Small cared about what’s best for Atlantic City, he’d resign from office so that a new mayor, without all of the baggage Marty carries, can lead Atlantic City,” declared Torres W. Mayfield Sr., vice chairman of the Atlantic City Democratic Committee. 

Along with the child sex abuse lawsuit, Small is facing a case against him brought by a rival who confronted the mayor in early May. Craig Callaway, a well-known political operative who is currently working on behalf of 2021 Atlantic City mayoral candidate Tom Foley, got into an altercation with Small which he claims should have resulted in charges.

A video released online allegedly shows Small threatening Callaway after he tells the mayor, “[You’re] a child molester protector.” 

“I’m going to whoop your f—— a–, b—-,” Smalls is claimed to be heard saying in the video. Callaway says a police officer was with Small, but failed to intervene. Callaway’s lawsuit seeks an assault charge to be levied against Small.

Yet Another Mayoral Scandal

This isn’t the first time Marty Small has faced allegations. In 2006 and 2011, Small was charged with two counts of election fraud, but was acquitted in both instances.  

It’s also not the first time a sitting Atlantic City mayor has faced wrongful allegations. Since the 1970s, five Atlantic City mayors have been busted on corruption charges. Gilliam, the most recent, admitted to stealing $87,000 from a youth basketball club that he founded.