New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
AP Photo/Richard Drew
- Former NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo won’t face criminal charges over a female state trooper’s sexual harassment allegations.
- The Nassau County acting DA said while the allegations were “credible” and “deeply troubling,” they were not criminal.
- In a CNN interview in August, an attorney for Cuomo said the governor extended an apology to the state trooper.
Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo will not face criminal charges after a female state trooper accused him of touching her inappropriately in 2019, a county prosecutor said Thursday.
The 2019 incident was included in a damning investigation into the former governor’s conduct by New York Attorney General Letitia James.
The trooper, who was identified as “Trooper No. 1” in the AG’s report, was assigned to protect Cuomo during an event in 2019 at the Belmont Park racetrack. According to testimony transcripts, the former governor ran the palm of his left hand across her stomach.
“And while he’s walking and we’re in motion, while he’s walking into the door, he takes his left hand and basically, like, thumb facing down, I felt the palm of his hand in the center of my stomach on my bellybutton and, like, pushed back towards my right hip, like, where my gun is,” she said. “So he’s walking one way, his hand is running across my stomach in the opposite direction.”
“I felt like completely violated because, to me, that’s between my chest and my privates, which, you know, if he was a little bit north or a little bit south, it’s not good,” the trooper said, according to the report.
Joyce Smith, Nassau County’s acting district attorney, said, though an “exhaustive investigation” into the trooper’s allegations found them “credible, deeply troubling,” they were “not criminal under New York law.”
“It is important to note that our investigation was limited to alleged conduct at Belmont Racetrack, and prosecutors in other jurisdictions continue to review other allegations of misconduct by Mr. Cuomo,” Smith said in a statement.
She added: “We thank the brave individuals who came forward and cooperated with our office during this investigation and gratefully acknowledge our colleagues, Attorney General James, and the New York State Assembly, for their diligence and collaboration.”
In a statement posted to Twitter, Cuomo’s spokesperson Rich Azzopardi slammed James, accusing her of using the investigation into Cuomo as a “political springboard” for her own bid for governor next year, an effort which she has since abandoned.
“With each passing day, it becomes more and more clear that the Attorney General’s report was the intersection of gross prosecutorial misconduct and an abuse of government power for political purposes,” Azzopardi said. “Her press conference claimed ’11 cases of violations of federal and state laws,’ ignited the cancel culture mentality, and started a media and political stampede against Governor Cuomo.”
Cuomo resigned from office in August amid a slew of sexual harassment accusations by several women. He has since denied the allegations against him in the scandal.
In a CNN interview in August, an attorney for Cuomo said the governor extended an apology to the state trooper.
“With respect to trooper, number one, he wants to apologize to her,” attorney Rita Glavin said in the interview. “He has tremendous respect for her, and he never in any way, shape, or form meant to make her feel as if he was touching her in a sexual way or violated her as I think she testified to.”
Glavin added: “I do want to make that point, that in many ways that she felt that way, that he did something that, you know, was untoward and that she felt disrespected, absolutely. He feels quite badly about it.”
A lawyer representing the state trooper did not immediately return Insider’s request for comment. Insider also reached out to James’ office for comment on the Nassau County DA’s decision not to press criminal charges.