Virginia Democratic Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax has been accused of sexual misconduct by a second woman.
Attorney Nancy Erika Smith, the same attorney who represented former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson in her sexual harassment lawsuit against the late Roger Ailes, asserted Friday that Fairfax raped her client Meredith Watson in 2000. At the time, both Fairfax and Watson were students at Duke University and were friends but had never been involved romantically, Smith said.
Details of the alleged assault were not disclosed, but Smith said that Watson has shared her story with friends via email and Facebook messenger, and that former classmates have backed up Watson’s account. Smith called on Fairfax, who graduated from Duke in 2000, to resign.
“At this time, Ms. Watson is reluctantly coming forward out of a strong sense of civic duty and her belief that those seeking or serving in public office should be of the highest character,” Smith, a civil rights attorney and partner at Smith Mullin, P.C., said in a statement. “She has no interest in becoming a media personality or reliving the trauma that has greatly affected her life. Similarly, she is not seeking any financial damages.”
Fairfax dismissed Watson’s allegations Friday as “demonstrably false,” and is requesting for an investigation into the matter.
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