Your intrepid blogger is now in receipt of the very same letter referenced in the LA Times from Victim #4 whose original Assembly Rules Committee complaint was dismissed on technicalities.
In February of 2015, Assemblyman Bill Brough followed me into the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel and sexually battered me by pressing his erection against me and saying, “You know I’m really into you, right?” I was shocked and disoriented and stammered something about being married. I’ve no idea why I said those particular words, but he replied, “So am I.” This happened after almost two years of subtle and overt attempts to initiate an intimate relationship with me. At all times, he has been in a position of power over me. When the un-welcomed conduct began, he was a Chief of Staff working for the Assembly and I was a district representative working for the Senate. The power imbalance remained when he became a legislator and I accepted a governmental affairs position that required me to lobby state legislators, the position that I still hold…
Read the above paragraph as many times as it takes to comprehend it. This woman re-filed her complaint after it was dismissed on technicalities the first time. The letter I obtained is dated 3-22-2018. Again, I ask the question, why are the men in OCGOP leadership refusing to protect women? Note, that Bill Brough repeatedly denied the existence of this complaint and others when asked directly about it, only to later show off the letter dismissing the first complaint to the OC Register as some sort of vindication.
As with the previous victim who communicated with me and asked for anonymity, so did this victim. It is been made clear to me that Bill Brough knows who this person is as well. This proves then that there are a lot of details in this claim of misconduct that are undeniably true. In fact, before dismissing the original complaint from this victim on a technicality the Assembly investigators conceded that the claim was legitimate. (Read on)
…Through my conduct, I established an unmistakable pattern of behavior that showed I did not welcome Assemblyman Brough’s advances, but the Assembly investigation ignored this evidence and, instead, focused on whether or not his behavior could have been misunderstood, or that he reasonably believed it was consensual behavior. This incorrect standard always favors the abuser. All he has to do in order to avoid consequences is be secretive enough to make the allegations hard to prove; he goes free while I have to rearrange my professional life.
Again, I ask the question is it any wonder why it is so difficult for women to come forward?
…Unfortunately for me, my job in government affairs requires me to socially interact with legislators like him, especially the ones from XXXXXXXXXXX. I agreed to meet him for drinks after work, but would only go to well-lit public places, and agreed to lunch meetings during business hours. I declined other requests such as going for a walk on the beach during what was supposed to be a business lunch in the district, or accept a hotel room from him during a campaign…
…I also declined his proposition for an extramarital affair. I was told by Tosha Cherry that the investigator did substantiate this act, but that no violation of Assembly policy was found. As I explain below, this is a literal violation of one Assembly policy, and it should violate others.
I have been told by several people over the years that the investigation process is incompetent and lazy. I tend to agree with their opinions after reading this letter and people with a similar attitude toward doing their job have been in charge of handing rules committee complaints EVEN AFTER the #METOO explosion.
The punchline is at the end of the letter:
I did what I was supposed to do in reporting his propositions for an extramarital affair and sexual battery. I made it clear during the interview that I did not want a lawsuit, and was not seeking to publicly attack the Assembly or Assemblyman Brough. However, the conclusion in your letter dated March 9, 2018, is transparently incorrect and plainly does not apply or follow the California State Assembly Policy Against Sexual Harassment. The Assembly Committee on Rules needs to follow its own policy in the determination of this and all investigations. If the Assembly Committee on Rules continues a course of not following its own policy, there must be public scrutiny of the process to ensure justice for victims of sexual harassment. To date, the only legislators that have suffered meaningful consequences for their actions are where the victims went public.
This is another example of how the system is rigged. The victims are forced to go public and are then blackballed from getting another legislative or lobbying job again. Even as I type this, power brokers in Orange County are at war with each other behind closed doors over how to deal with the Bill Brough Issue. Seldom, if ever do I get any updates where anyone gives a rip about the victims.
Again, contrast this to the political operatives that accuse Judicial Nominees or the President. This claim is extremely specific, was made within a short period of time from the incident in question and has corroboration. Also note that the victim was attempting to seek private redress for her grievances, not public redress UNTIL the Assembly Rules Committee chose expediency over doing their job.
Meantime, the inaction of political leaders allows Mr. Brough to dig in further. To be continued…
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