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Cuomo's office opens its own investigation into groping allegations: report

 Cuomo's office opens its own investigation into groping allegations: report

New York Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoNew York City's suicide mission should alarm the entire nation New York's wealthy could face 51.8 percent tax rate: report Rep. Lee Zeldin announces bid for New York governor MORE’s (D) office has opened its own investigation in response to allegations that Cuomo groped a female aide at the governor’s mansion, the Albany Times Union reported Wednesday

"We have our own inquiries ongoing," a senior aide to Cuomo told the Times Union. "We have an obligation to investigate any claim of sexual harassment. And we, after reporting [the female aide's allegations] to the [attorney general], were directed to continue our own inquiry. ... So there are multiple inquiries."

Allegations surfaced earlier this month that Cuomo reached under an aide's blouse and fondled her at the governor's mansion. She was the sixth woman to accuse Cuomo of sexual misconduct.

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Cuomo’s office reportedly found out about the incident after the woman became upset at a press conference where Cuomo denied allegations from other women that he sexually harassed them. 

The woman has not filed a formal complaint against the governor and still works in the office, the Times Union reported.

The attorney for the woman who accused Cuomo of groping her told the Times Union that the governor’s office’s investigation is a “shadow investigation” as New York Attorney General Letitia James's (D) office conducts its own investigation into the allegations.

We fully informed the AG's office of the required process with this type of allegation and they said to follow it. The matter was referred to GOER [the Governor's Office of Employee Relations] and informed local law enforcement and that is the full extent of the action,” Beth Garvey, acting counsel for Cuomo, told The Hill.

Staffers in Cuomo’s office will have an attorney provided to them if they are interviewed by the attorney general’s office. 

"It was also explicitly said that you can hire your own attorney if you don’t want to use [the attorneys retained by the governor's office],” a senior administration official told Times Union.

Cuomo has been facing calls from Republicans and Democrats to step down as governor over the sexual harassment allegations, as well as alleged mismanagement of nursing homes during the coronavirus pandemic.

Cuomo maintains that he never inappropriately touched anyone and will not step down as governor.