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Virginia lieutenant governor denies new sexual assault allegation

10 February 2019
Virginia lieutenant governor denies new sexual assault allegation

"I say this again without reservation: I did not sexually assault or rape Meredith Watson, Vanessa Tyson or anyone else", his latest statement asserted.

Watson, Trinity '01, claimed Fairfax raped her when they were undergraduate students.

The two undergrads were "friends" at Duke but did not date or see each other romantically, according to Watson's lawyer, Nancy Erika Smith. "That is true. Ms. Watson was raped by a basketball player during her sophomore year at Duke". "Additionally, we have statements from former classmates corroborating that Ms. Watson immediately told friends that Mr. Fairfax had raped her".

Fairfax also denied the second allegation on Friday and said he would not resign. "This is part of the sad and dark politics that the Lt. Governor has dedicated himself to helping Virginia and the nation rise above".

Northam said he believes the "horrific" scandal has better positioned him to address critical social issues, even while the state's black lawmakers continue pressing him to resign. The state party joins a long list of elected officials and Democratic presidential hopefuls who have called for Fairfax's resignation.

The sexual allegations against Fairfax come following Gov. Ralph Northam's shocking medical school yearbook photo of someone in blackface and another person in a KKK hood surfacing. Consequently, I call on all appropriate and impartial investigatory authorities, including the FBI, to investigate fully and thoroughly the allegations against me by Ms. Watson and Dr. Tyson.

"So if you ever doubted this is chaos, just remember how much has changed in exactly one week", Sabato said.

Watson also confided in a friend after seeing that Fairfax was running for office.

Virginia slid deeper into crisis on Wednesday, when Attorney General Mark Herring acknowledged wearing blackface at a college party in 1980, and Fairfax was publicly accused of sexual assault for the first time.

Fairfax (D) has been accused by two women of sexual assault, the newest of which he said was "demonstrably false".

On Friday, a law firm representing the second woman, Meredith Watson, issued a statement on her behalf outlining her allegation.

"I am writing to let you know that Justin Fairfax will be asked to step down from the Sanford School Board of Visitors pending the resolution of the serious and deeply distressing allegations that have been made against him", wrote Judith Kelley, dean of the Sanford School, in an email to the Sanford community Friday night.

Northam and Herring are struggling to affirm their respect for African-Americans after acknowledging they wore blackface once decades ago.

The governor also said in the interview that he would take "a harder line" on moving the state's Confederate monuments, which have become lightning rods for racial division, from public property into museums. It is clear to me that he can no longer effectively serve the people of Virginia as Lieutenant Governor,"former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe tweeted Friday after Watson's allegation surfaced".