California Democrat accused of sexual abuse says lawsuit has been dropped

California Democrat accused of sexual abuse says lawsuit has been dropped
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Rep. Tony Cárdenas (D-Calif.) says a woman who accused him of sexual assault has dropped the charges. 

The California Democrat had denied the allegations that he assaulted the woman in 2007, when she was 16 and he was an L.A. City Council member.

Angela Villela Chavez agreed in court to have her lawsuit dismissed with prejudice, the Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday.

Cárdenas and his lawyers announced the charges had been dropped in a statement from public relations firm The Rose Group, provided to CNN

"There is no place in our society for such untruths. In this case the truth prevailed and I humbly thank my family, community and constituents who know that I am a person of integrity," Cárdenas said in the statement.

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Chavez had accused Cárdenas of drugging and fondling her in 2007, filing the case in April 2018. Court documents alleged the congressman gave the teen water that "tasted distinctly different from both tap and filtered water" and she collapsed. 

She had accused Cárdenas of reaching under her clothes and fondling her breasts and genitals as he took her to the hospital. 

Chavez had said she was prompted to come forward with her allegations by the #MeToo movement, the Los Angeles Times reports. 

According to the newspaper, the two sides reached their agreement two months after Chavez's attorney Lisa Bloom said her firm needed to drop out of the case for unspecified reasons. 

“I regret my decision in choosing her as my attorney,” Chavez told the Los Angeles Times.

Bloom told the Los Angeles Times in an email, “Ms. Chavez has been through a very tough experience and I wish her all the best."