Fairfax leaves law firm amid sexual assault allegations: report

Virginia Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax (D) said Monday that he’s resigning as a partner at his law firm following multiple allegations of sexual assault, The Washington Post reports.

Morrison & Foerster, which hired Fairfax last year, placed him on leave after two women accused the lieutenant governor of sexual assault in the 2000s.

“It has been an honor to be affiliated with such a distinguished firm as Morrison & Foerster, and I wanted to allow them to conclude their investigation before announcing my departure from the firm,” Fairfax said in a statement, according to the Post. “But with that process completed, I have decided that, at the present time, it is best for me to focus my attention on serving the people of Virginia.”

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In a statement to the newspaper, a Morrison & Foerster spokesman said the firm’s investigation into Fairfax found no evidence of misconduct during his time there.

The firm did not investigate the women’s allegations.

“The investigation conducted by the firm found neither allegations nor evidence of any wrongdoing by Justin during his tenure at the firm,” the Morrison & Foerster spokesman said. “With the conclusion of our investigation, Justin’s leave of absence has ended. Justin has informed us, however, that he has decided to leave the firm and we respect that decision."

Fairfax has been accused of sexual assault by two women: Vanessa Tyson, who alleges Fairfax assaulted her in Boston in 2004 at the Democratic National Convention, and Meredith Watson, who said Fairfax raped her when they were students at Duke University in 2000. 

Fairfax has denied both allegations and previously told The Hill in a written statement that he was “very focused right now on clearing my name and demonstrating through facts and evidence that these suspiciously-timed and politically-motivated allegations are false.”

Fairfax is reportedly “thinking very seriously” about a 2021 gubernatorial bid.