Cuomo Won’t Be Charged For Touching Trooper At Racetrack

Image by Darren McGee / Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. 02/15/2021.

NEW YORK (AP) — Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo won’t face criminal charges after a female state trooper said she felt “completely violated” by his unwanted touching at an event at Belmont Park in September 2019, a Long Island prosecutor said Thursday. 

Acting Nassau County District Attorney Joyce Smith said in a statement that an investigation found the allegations against Cuomo “credible, deeply troubling, but not criminal under New York law.” 

Smith started investigating the racetrack encounter after it was detailed in Attorney General Letitia James’ August report on sexual harassment allegations against Cuomo. The report, chronicling accusations from 11 women, led to Cuomo’s resignation from office. 

A message seeking comment was left with Cuomo’s spokesperson. 

According to James’ report, the trooper said Cuomo ran the palm of his left hand across her stomach, to her belly button and then to her right hip, where she kept her gun, while she held a door open for him as he left an event at Belmont Park on Sept. 23, 2019. 

The trooper, a member of Cuomo’s security detail, told James’ investigators that Cuomo’s conduct made her feel “completely violated because to me, like that’s between my chest and my privates.” 

James’ report said that although the trooper was upset by Cuomo’s unwanted touching, she did not feel she could do anything about it, telling investigators: “I felt completely violated. But, you know, I’m here to do a job.” 

The Nassau County investigation was limited only to the encounter at Belmont Park, which is on the county’s border with New York City. Authorities in other parts of the state have been looking into other allegations in James’ report. 

In October, the Albany County sheriff’s office filed a misdemeanor groping complaint against Cuomo, but a week later the district attorney asked a judge for more time to evaluate the evidence, saying the sheriff’s one-page criminal complaint was “potentially defective.” 

At the prosecutor’s request, a court delayed Cuomo’s scheduled arraignment until Jan. 7. 


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