New York Prosecution Drop One of Major Harassment Lawsuits Against Former Governor Andrew Cuomo | International

The governor of New York on August 10 in New York, the day he announced his resignation.
The governor of New York on August 10 in New York, the day he announced his resignation.Seth Little (AP)

The Albany prosecution has further lightened the judicial burden facing former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. This Tuesday it was reported that the accusation is withdrawn in the case of a misdemeanor, with a sentence of one year in prison for touching the breast of Brittany Commisso, an assistant to the politician, at the residence of the local executive in December 2020. The lawsuit had been filed last October by the office of the sheriffBut the local prosecutor has said that although “credible”, the accusation would be difficult to prove with evidence in a criminal court. This is the third accusation of a sexual nature against the Democratic politician that has been recently withdrawn, after those of the Westchester and Nassau prosecutors.

A lawsuit filed in October claimed that Cuomo “forcibly and intentionally” placed his hand under Commisso’s blouse while they worked alone at Cuomo’s official residence. Amy Kowalski, one of the investigators in the case, assured the press that the former governor acted to “degrade the victim and gratify his sexual desires.” The indictment turned into a scandal and was one of the main ones facing Cuomo, one of the great figures of the Democratic party until he was forced to leave office in August, besieged by the publication of a 165-page report that collected accusations. of eleven women, most of them state employees.

David Soares, attorney for the prosecution, said Tuesday that, after analyzing all the available evidence, “we have concluded that it is not possible for us to prove the burden of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.” This, he said, despite finding the facts narrated by Commisso “credible.” The former assistant showed all her willingness to collaborate with the authorities, Soares reported. “We are deeply dismayed by allegations like these,” he added. During the entire investigation process, the lawyer maintained a close relationship with the office of the sherriff, in charge of the early stage of the investigation. The prosecution considered that they did not have a case as strong as the one they announced to the media last year. Saoares himself asked a local judge for more time at the end of November to be able to complete his own investigation. The magistrate accepted the petition and pushed a presentation order against the former governor to Friday, January 7. This will not arrive after the announcement of this Tuesday.

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“It is a crime what he did to me … It was not a welcome gesture, much less consensual,” said the former Commisso in a televised interview in August. “Neither for me nor for the rest of the women to whom he did this is normal,” he added. His lawyer, Brian Premo, assured this Tuesday that the victim will continue to seek justice through a new civil lawsuit “which will be filed in due course.” Cuomo has always denied that the events occurred at the residence.

Civil remedies are now opened as the main option for the alleged victims of Cuomo. This before the collapse of three criminal cases. A day before Christmas, the Nassau (Long Beach) prosecutor’s office reported that it would not pursue the accusation of a highway police, who said she had been touched by Cuomo at an event in 2019. “It is credible, but it is not a criminal act under New York State law, ”concluded prosecutor Joyce Smith. Five days later, good news arrived for the former governor. The Rochester prosecutor’s office, in the same district, said it was abandoning the case started after two women denounced the politician for kissing them without their consent.

“I hug people, I kiss them, men and women, for as long as I can remember,” Cuomo said on August 10, the day he left the position he held for more than a decade. “In my mind I have never crossed the line, but the lines have been redrawn,” he added about what he considered a change of the times. Today the winds seem to blow in their favor.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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