Mayor Dave Bing said the 44-year-old Godbee submitted a letter of retirement, effective immediately, from the job he’s held since 2010.
Bing said Godbee told him about his decision to retire during a meeting Sunday. The mayor said he did not force Godbee to leave but believes “this was the right decision by the chief.” Bing said Godbee was “contrite” and “embarrassed.”
“Yes, he did apologize … he felt he let the citizens of Detroit down,” Bing said at a news conference.
Godbee is married, but filed for divorce in August.
Godbee has not publicly commented on the revelations of his affair with Angelica Robinson. There was no mention of the scandal in an eight-paragraph letter dated Monday from Godbee to Bing that announced the former chief’s retirement. A copy of the letter was released to reporters after the news conference.
Godbee becomes the latest high-profile city Detroit official to fall victim to an extramarital sexual dalliance, joining former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, whose lie about a relationship with an aide and other matters forced his resignation in 2008 and ultimately led to a prison stint on perjury charges.
Bing placed Godbee on a 30-day suspension last week pending an investigation into the claims by Robinson’s attorney that the 37-year-old woman had wanted the relationship to end, but that Godbee did not.
At the news conference, Bing said assistant Chief Chester Logan will serve as interim chief. Logan had assumed Godbee’s responsibilities during the suspension. A national search for a new chief is underway.
Robinson’s lawyer revealed that she and Godbee had been seeing each other for about a year, but Godbee was upset when she wanted to end the relationship.
Robinson posted a photo of herself with her service weapon in her mouth on the social media site Twitter after learning Godbee was at a weekend police conference with another woman, attorney David Robinson has said.
He said Godbee had other officers locate Robinson and put her under surveillance.
Godbee was appointed to the $140,400-a-year job by Bing, succeeding former Wayne County sheriff Warren Evans as police chief in 2010.
Bing had hired Evans a year earlier, but fired him after he took part in a promotional video for a cable police reality show. Bing later said he also fired Evans because the chief was romantically involved with Lt. Monique Patterson.
Godbee also had a romantic relationship with Patterson before she began dating Evans and while she was Godbee’s subordinate.
Godbee joined the department in 1987, rising to assistant chief by 2007. He later retired only to be reappointed assistant chief in July 2009 when Evans was hired.