An in-depth investigation of the sexual misconduct claims against former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo found “overwhelming evidence” that the Democrat engaged in sexual harassment.
probe was carried out by the Davis Polk & Wardwell firm at the behest of the聽New York State Assembly Judiciary Committee, which was charged by Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, a Democrat, to determine whether the claims had evidentiary support.
A dozen women came forward to accuse Cuomo of sexual misconduct, including levying sexual harassment and sexual assault allegations.
probe involved interviewing witnesses and reviewing an enormous volume of material, including emails, photographs, phone call recordings, social media accounts, and depositions.
Investigators said allegations from a state trooper whose name has not been released publicly and Brittany Commisso, an executive assistant in the state’s Executive Chamber since late 2017, both met the definition of sexual harassment under state law.
“By highlighting these two examples, we do not intend in any way to diminish the allegations of the other ten women who have come forward or suggest that we do not find them to be credible. We have reviewed the former Governor鈥檚 challenges to the allegations, and nothing in his voluminous submissions can overcome the overwhelming evidence of his misconduct,” the 63-page report, made public on Monday, stated.
investigation also uncovered evidence that under Cuomo, the governor’s office engaged in unethical conduct.
Multiple staffers were drafted to help with a book that netted Cuomo over $5 million in advance payments, the investigation found. Staffers transcribed portions of the book, met with agents and publishers, and participated in meetings to review and finalize it. book deal was revoked by a state board last week.
investigation also found that a nursing home death report that the governor’s office was involved with was “not fully transparent” because it excluded deaths among seniors that happened outside nursing homes, and that the office withheld information indicating the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge was unsafe.
judiciary committee said it would make the evidence compiled available to the relevant authorities.
“As we have throughout this process, we will continue to cooperate with all relevant investigative bodies to provide them with the evidence we have uncovered,” Heastie said in a statement.
“ former governor鈥檚 conduct鈥攁s shown in this report鈥攊s extremely disturbing and is indicative of someone who is not fit for office. I hope this report helps New Yorkers further understand the seriousness of the allegations that have been made and serves to guide us to a more ethical and responsible government. New Yorkers deserve no less,” added state Assemblyman聽Charles Lavine, a Democrat who chairs the judiciary panel.
In a statement to news outlets, Cuomo’s attorney Rita Glavin said the new report “simply parrots the attorney general’s flawed report, failing to engage with the many errors and omissions in the AG鈥檚 report and her one-sided, biased investigation.”
New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, tapped two outside lawyers to lead a separate investigation into the misconduct claims, which substantiated them earlier this year. ir report, released in August, led to Cuomo’s resignation.
James later announced entry into the New York gubernatorial race.
鈥淎ny report that uses the attorney general鈥檚 politically biased investigation as a basis is going to be equally flawed,” Rich Azzopardi, a spokesman for Cuomo, said.
“What is interesting is that the Assembly didn’t even try to prove Tish James’ bogus ’11 legal violations,’ and instead only focused on two,” he added later. “When all the facts are fairly weighed there will be none.”
Pezou : ‘Overwhelming Evidence’ Cuomo Sexually Harassed Women: Report