Four women who accused NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment have been subpoenaed to testify under oath as part of NY AG Letitia James’ probe into the allegations.
Accusers Charlotte Bennett, Lindsey Boylan and Ana Liss have received subpoenas, as has an unidentified woman who accused Cuomo of groping her in the Executive Mansion in Albany.
At least 10 women in total, most of whom were former staffers, have come forward to allege Cuomo made inappropriate remarks to them or initiated unwanted physical contact.
Cuomo, 63, has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and has said he has no intention of resigning.
The Governor said on Thursday that he was looking forward to speaking to investigators.
Four women who accused NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo (pictured) of sexual harassment are subpoenaed to testify under oath as part of NY AG Letitia James’ probe into the allegations
NY AG Letitia James (pictured) launched a probe into the allegations against Cuomo on March 8 [File photo]
‘I am very eager to tell them the other side of the story because it is a much different story, and the truth will be told, and the truth is much, much different than what has been suggested,’ he said, adding: ‘I’ll leave it at that for now.’
Cuomo has previously admitted to acting ‘in a way that made people feel uncomfortable,’ but has always denied any inappropriate physical contact.
At a press conference on Thursday, he said that making someone feel uncomfortable did not constitute harassment, saying: ‘harassment is not making someone feel uncomfortable – that’s not harassment.
‘If I just made you feel uncomfortable, that is not harassment. That’s you feeling uncomfortable.’
Charlotte Bennett (pictured) – a former Cuomo staffer – has claimed Cuomo quizzed her about her sex life and told her he would consider dating ‘anyone above the age of 22’
‘I said I never meant to make anyone feel uncomfortable. I never said anything I believe is inappropriate.’
Cuomo’s comments appeared to contradict a 2019 law brought in during his time in office which changed the definition of what constituted harassment, City and State New York reported.
The legislation changed the threshold from ‘severe or pervasive’ behavior to ‘a petty or slight inconvenience’.
Bennett – a former Cuomo staffer – has claimed Cuomo quizzed her about her sex life and told her he would consider dating ‘anyone above the age of 22’.
She is expected to provide testimony to the investigation in the next two weeks, according to her lawyer Debra Katz.
Katz said Bennett had provided ‘120 pages of contemporaneous records’ and has identified more than two dozen possible eyewitnesses to the alleged harassment.
Lindsey Boylan (pictured), 36, claims Cuomo commented on her appearance inappropriately, kissed her without her consent and went out of his way to touch her on her lower back, arms and legs
Boylan, 36, claims Cuomo commented on her appearance inappropriately, kissed her without her consent and went out of his way to touch her on her lower back, arms and legs.
She also alleges that he once suggested a game of strip poker aboard his state-owned jet.
Liss, 35, previously served as Cuomo’s policy and operations aide between 2013 and 2015. She has said that during her time in his administration, the governor had subjected her to unsolicited advances.
Liss claims these included asking her if she had a boyfriend, touching her on the lower back during an event reception and kissing her on the hand.
Ana Liss (pictured), 35, previously served as Cuomo’s policy and operations aide between 2013 and 2015. She has said that during her time in his administration, the governor had subjected her to unsolicited advances
James’ inquiry into the claims against Cuomo began on March 8 and since then investigators have interviewed multiple women at length, though not under oath.
The issuing of the subpoenas suggests that the case is now moving beyond the fact-finding phase.
No deadline has been set for the release of findings but the New York Times reported that it would most likely be completed by the end of summer, citing ‘a person with knowledge of the investigation who was not authorized to discuss it publicly’.
James has hired outside lawyers to take part in the investigation, with Joon H. Kim, a former federal prosecutor, and Anne L. Clark, a prominent employment lawyer, leading the interviews.
Clark has reportedly collected documentation of the harassment claims, including text messages, emails and photographs.
Meanwhile, Kim has been looking into whether Cuomo or his aides broke any laws or sought to retaliate against the governor’s accusers, the New York Times reported.