Cuomo’s executive assistant accuses New York governor of groping her

US

An executive assistant to Andrew Cuomo has waived her right to anonymity, alleging the New York governor groped her under her shirt, hugged her and kissed her without consent.

Brittany Commisso was previously known as ‘Executive Assistant #1’ in an inquiry instigated by New York Attorney General Letitia James.

But the 32-year-old says she broke her anonymity because she wants Mr Cuomo to be held accountable for what she says are “crimes” committed against her.

FILE PHOTO: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks during a news conference, in New York, U.S., May 10, 2021. Mary Altaffer/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo
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Ms Commisso says she wants Mr Cuomo to be held accountable

Mr Cuomo, 63, denies any wrongdoing and has so far resisted calls to resign despite nearly 200 people complaining about his alleged sexual misconduct.

Brittany Commisso spoke to CBS and the Albany Times Union. She said Mr Cuomo’s behaviour towards her became progressively sexually suggestive after she started working with him and that it began with inappropriate hugging.

She said: “These are not hugs that he would give his mother or his brother. These were hugs with the intention of getting some personal sexual satisfaction out of.

“Then they started to be hugs and kisses on the cheek, and then there was at one point a hug and then when he went to go kiss me on the cheek he’d quickly turned his head and he kissed me on the lips.”

More on New York

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‘This is not who I am’ – Cuomo’s sexual harassment denial

Commisso admitted that she did not say anything in response at the time.

She said: “People don’t understand that this is the governor of New York. There are troopers outside. They are not there to protect me, they are there to protect him.

“I felt as though if I did something to insult him, especially insult him in his own home, it wasn’t going to be him that’s going to get fired or in trouble.”

Ms Commisso also accused Mr Cuomo of touching her bottom while the pair were posing for a photograph together and claimed that on a separate occasion he put his hand up her blouse and grabbed her breast.

She also identified herself as the complainant in a criminal investigation that has been opened against Mr Cuomo in Albany County, New York.

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Joe Biden calls on Andrew Cuomo to resign

Governor Cuomo said in a statement last week that he had “never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances”.

On Sunday, his top aide, Melissa DeRosa, announced her resignation after a report found he sexually harassed 11 women.

Last week, President Joe Biden called for Mr Cuomo to step down over the report’s findings.

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