A report published by the Times Union of Albany on Wednesday says an aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the Democrat groped her in the governor's mansion. It's the most serious allegation against the embattled governor to date.
The three-term governor faces harassment allegations from five other women. The female aide was not identified by the newspaper, which based its reporting on an unidentified source with direct knowledge of the women's accusation.
Through a spokesperson, the governor again on Wednesday denied ever touching a woman inappropriately.
After initially denying the first accusations against him, Cuomo admitted to "flirtation."
“I acknowledge some of the things I have said have been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation. To the extent anyone felt that way, I am truly sorry about that," Cuomo said.
Attorney Debra Katz, who represents accuser Charlotte Bennett, released a statement following the new report:
“This victim’s allegations are eerily similar to what Charlotte Bennett has alleged. Charlotte was summoned to the Capitol on a Saturday, left isolated with the Governor and asked to help him with minor technical issues with his phone. Charlotte reported this behavior and the Governor’s sexual proposition to his most senior aides, including his Special Counsel, Judith Mogul. In response, those aides failed to report Charlotte’s claims to the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations, as they were legally required. The Governor’s sexual harassment, which Charlotte Bennett reported, was buried by his aides and never properly investigated. Because of their enablement, another young woman was left in harm’s way. Had the Governor’s staff taken Charlotte Bennett’s allegations and their legal obligations seriously, perhaps this woman would have been spared of this sexual assault. That the governor does not deny touching people, but insists he never did it inappropriately, shows he is committed to gaslighting victims and perpetuating these lies. This is exactly how abusers operate.”