Andrew Cuomo charged with forcible touching, a misdemeanor sex crime

Andrew Cuomo charged with forcible touching, a misdemeanor sex crime

By Tom Winter, Jonathan Dienst, and Dareh Gregorian | NBC News

Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been charged with forcible touching, a misdemeanor sex crime, according to documents filed in an Albany City Court on Thursday.

The criminal complaint alleges that Cuomo placed his hand “under the blouse” of the victim and “onto her intimate body part” for “purposes of degrading and gratifying his sexual desires.” The incident allegedly occurred on Dec. 7, 2020, at the governor’s mansion.

The charge is a class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to a year in jail or three years probation. A criminal summons has been issued for Cuomo to appear in court on Nov. 17, Albany County Sheriff Craig D. Apple Sr. said.

Apple said that his agency went to the court Thursday with evidence for the court to “determine the most appropriate legal pathway” for the investigation into Cuomo. But Albany County District Attorney David Soares, whose office would prosecute the case, said he was “surprised to learn” the county sheriff’s office had filed the complaint. He declined further comment.

Cuomo attorney Rita Glavin said her client “never assaulted anyone,” and pointed to the confusion between the DA and the sheriff. “Sheriff Apple didn’t even tell the District Attorney what he was doing,” Glavin said. “This is not professional law enforcement; this is politics.”

165-page report issued by state Attorney General Letitia James in August alleged that Cuomo had sexually harassed or inappropriately touched 11 women, including an executive assistant who described being groped at the governor’s mansion.

James’ report said Cuomo’s interaction with the assistant “escalated” over time to “more intimate physical contact” including regular hugs and kisses on the cheek and at least one kiss on the lips. The interactions culminated in the incident at the mansion, when Cuomo allegedly “reached under her blouse and grabbed her breast,” the report alleged.

The criminal complaint does not identify the victim.

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