DC councilmembers call for special committee to investigate Jack Evans over ethics issues

Emails from 2018 show DC Councilmember Jack Evans tried to solicit personal business for himself with law firms that lobby District officials. In the emails, Evans highlighted his knowledge of and connections in DC government, where he's been in office longer than anyone else.

On Monday, FOX 5 caught up with Evans, who is also the Metro Board chairman, at his office in the Wilson Building, and asked if he'd comment on these reports. The normally talkative Evans, wasn't very talkative today and said, "No thanks, I don't have anything to say."

Mayor Muriel Bowser said Monday the DC government should investigate Evans.

DC Council President Phil Mendelson is examining disciplinary options.

"Well, certainly we will provide any information that's asked of us, and I would expect that any member of the Council would be cooperative if questioned regarding the use of government resources," said Bowser.

"I believe our code of conduct provides that members should not use Council resources for personal purposes and personal gain… for personal gain," said Mendelson.

The Washington Post filed a Freedom of Information Act request for Evans' emails, and what came back were several job-seeking emails from Evans' DC Council email account asking law firms to hire him in January 2015 and 2018.

Evans wrote in the emails that the firms should hire him because he was a councilman and the WMATA board chair. The documents say he claimed he could "cross-market" that knowledge on behalf of the company.

Evans has already been in hot water for mixing personal business and politics. Last fall, a federal grand jury issued a subpoena on a 2016 bill Evans pushed that would've helped a digital-sign company, which the councilmember received - and said he returned - money and stock from.

Steve Thompson of the Washington Post, says the new email could launch more investigations coming on the heels of Evans' previous probe.

"We know now that there was an ethics inquiry into that and, in fact, the U.S. Department of Justice was looking into all of that stuff. These memos? We don't know and don't have any reason to think that anybody has been looking into that," said Thompson.

A Metro spokesperson told FOX 5 Monday evening the board is asking its ethics officer to open up a review of Evans and his tenure as the board chairman in relation to these new emails.

Washington Post reporter Fenit Nirappil tweeted Monday evening, "D.C. Council member David Grosso is joined by @tweetelissa (Elissa Silverman) and @BrianneKNadeau (Brianne K. Nadeau) in calling for a special committee to investigate Jack Evans over recent ethics issues."

Nirappil says they also sent a letter to Mendelson "urging him to reconsider committee assignments."