Thursday, November 16, 2017
4 More Women Accuse Roy Moore of Misconduct, Al Franken accused of "Forcible Kissing & Groping"
- 4 More Women Accuse Roy Moore of Misconduct
- New Roy Moore accuser: 'He didn't pinch it; he grabbed it'
- Alabama G.O.P. Says It Stands Behind Roy Moore
- Al Franken Issues Apology After Accusation of Forcible Kissing and Groping
- Historical child abuse reports to Welsh police 'increase'
4 More Women Accuse Roy Moore of Misconduct
By ALAN BLINDER NOV. 15, 2017
GADSDEN, Ala. — Alabama’s increasingly bizarre Senate race was convulsed again as four more women came forward on Wednesday to describe encounters with the Republican candidate, Roy S. Moore, and Mr. Moore’s campaign sharply questioned the credibility of another accuser.
The newest accusations came from women who ranged in age from about 18 to 28 at the time. They complained of being groped, forcibly kissed or subjected to unwanted advances.
One of them, Becky Gray, now 62, a retired teacher living in Gadsden, Ala., said in an interview that she was puzzled by Mr. Moore’s repeated overtures when she worked in the Gadsden Mall.
“I just couldn’t figure out why a man of his age spent every Friday and Saturday at the mall,” said Ms. Gray, who was then in her late teens or early 20s.
She said she frequently saw Mr. Moore, then in his 30s, talking with young women and did her best to avoid him. Ms. Gray said she eventually complained to her manager that he would not leave her alone and was later told that Mr. Moore had been banned from the mall.
Nine women have now come forward with accusations, and state Republican leaders were pondering increasingly baroque mechanisms that have the potential to deny their own candidate a Senate seat.....
Another woman, Gena Richardson, told The Post that Mr. Moore had left her frightened after he gave her a “forceful” kiss when she was about 18 and Mr. Moore was in his 30s.
Separately, Kelly Harrison Thorp said that Mr. Moore had sought a date with her when she was 17 and he was in his 30s, and Ms. Gray told The Post about Mr. Moore’s advances.
Karen Lancaster, 63, a retired schoolteacher, confirmed Wednesday that Ms. Gray had told her, in the late 1980s, that Mr. Moore repeatedly tried to ask her out during those years at the mall.
“I’ve known for over 20 years that he was a predator, that he preyed upon girls in the mall,” she said. “It’s common knowledge.”
Ms. Thorp, in a subsequent interview with The New York Times, recalled asking Mr. Moore if he knew how old she was.
“‘Oh yeah, I go out with girls your age all the time,’” she remembered him replying.....
New Roy Moore accuser: 'He didn't pinch it; he grabbed it'
November 15, 2017 By Anna Claire Vollers
A Gadsden woman says Roy Moore groped her while she was in his law office on legal business with her mother in 1991. Moore was married at that time.
In the past week, Moore has been accused by five other women of a range of behaviors that include sexual misconduct with a woman when she was 14, and sexual assault of another when she was 16. This is the first public accusation of physical contact that happened after Moore was married.
In recent days, Moore has publicly denied any wrongdoing, and has denied knowing some of the women.
....Almost from the moment she walked in to Moore's office, Johnson said, Moore began flirting with her.
"He kept commenting on my looks, telling me how pretty I was, how nice I looked," recalled Johnson. "He was saying that my eyes were beautiful."
It made her uncomfortable. "I was thinking, can we hurry up and get out of here?"
Johnson was 28 years old, in a difficult marriage headed toward divorce, and unemployed. She was at the office to sign over custody of her 12-year-old son to her mother, with whom he'd been living. Her mother had hired Moore to handle the custody petition.
Johnson had two young daughters at the time with her then-husband, and her son said he wanted to live with his grandmother.
At one point during the meeting, she said, Moore came around the desk and sat on the front of it, just inches from her. He was so close, she said, she could smell his breath.
According to Johnson, he asked questions about her young daughters, including what color eyes they had and if they were as pretty as she was. She said that made her feel uncomfortable, too.
Once the papers were signed, she and her mother got up to leave. After her mother walked through the door first, she said, Moore came up behind her.
It was at that point, she recalled, he grabbed her buttocks.
"He didn't pinch it; he grabbed it," said Johnson. She was so surprised she didn't say anything. She didn't tell her mother.
She said she told her sister years later how Moore had made her feel uncomfortable during that meeting. Her sister told AL.com she remembers the conversation
....."This is not a politics thing with me," she said. "It's more of a moral and religious thing." It has bothered her over the years to see Moore on TV, talking about his Christian faith.
She wanted to come forward publicly now, she said, because it's hard for victims of harassment to talk openly about their experiences.
"I want people to know that it's OK to finally say something," she said. "I guess I'm ashamed I didn't say nothing, didn't turn around and slap him."
....Thorp said local women have not spoken publicly against Moore before now because he had power in town and in the state, and they didn't think they would be believed.
"Everybody knew it wouldn't matter," she said, "that he would get elected anyway because his supporters are never going to believe anything bad about him."
Johnson said the answer was even more simple.
"It's because somebody asked," she said. "If anybody had asked, we would have told it. No one asked."
Alabama G.O.P. Says It Stands Behind Roy Moore
By ALAN BLINDER NOV. 16, 2017
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — The Alabama Republican Party on Thursday offered unqualified support to the embattled candidacy of Roy S. Moore, ignoring the condemnation of national Republican leaders and brushing aside worries that he could lose a Senate race in a solidly conservative state — or be expelled from Congress if he wins.
....On Thursday, a parade of Christian activists, many of them from outside Alabama, gathered at a hotel here to declare their sustained backing for Mr. Moore and to beseech voters to look past the allegations.
But the event was often as much about criticizing the news media and Mr. Moore’s detractors as it was about shoring up the campaign.
“I believe he’s a man of God for the hour that we’re in, and he’ll represent us well,” said the Rev. David Floyd, a pastor at a Baptist church in Opelika. “By the way, we down here in Alabama, we don’t need Mitch McConnell or John McCain telling us who can be our representative in Congress. I believe that’s our choice to make.”....
Al Franken Issues Apology After Accusation of Forcible Kissing and Groping
By NICHOLAS FANDOS NOV. 16, 2017
WASHINGTON — A growing national outcry over sexual harassment reached the Senate on Thursday, when a radio newscaster accused Al Franken, Democrat of Minnesota, of kissing and groping her without consent during a 2006 U.S.O. tour of the Middle East before he took public office.
Mr. Franken, who has been mentioned as a possible presidential candidate, almost immediately released an apology to the newscaster, Leeann Tweeden, who said that Mr. Franken forcibly kissed her during a rehearsal and groped her for a photo as she slept.....
She also presented evidence, including a photograph of Mr. Franken, his head turned toward the camera, with his hands placed over Ms. Tweeden’s breasts as she slept.
According to Ms. Tweeden’s account, Mr. Franken wrote a bawdy script that included a kiss for the two to perform onstage. When it came time to rehearse the skit, she wrote, Mr. Franken insisted on kissing despite her protestations.
“I immediately pushed him away with both of my hands against his chest and told him if he ever did that to me again I wouldn’t be so nice about it the next time,” Ms. Tweeden wrote. “I walked away. All I could think about was getting to a bathroom as fast as possible to rinse the taste of him out of my mouth.”
“I felt disgusted and violated,” she added.
Ms. Tweeden said that no one else witnessed the kiss, and she did not tell the tour’s organizers. She said Mr. Franken retaliated against her with insults and, she learned after the trip ended, the compromising photograph.
Ms. Tweeden said the photograph was taken while she was asleep on a flight back to the United States from Afghanistan and that she saw it only later, after the trip ended.
“I felt violated all over again. Embarrassed. Belittled. Humiliated,” she wrote. “How dare anyone grab my breasts like this and think it’s funny?”....
Historical child abuse reports to Welsh police 'increase'
16 November 2017
Allegations of non-recent sexual offences recorded against children have risen sharply in the last four years, according to the NSPCC.
Welsh police forces recorded 947 offences in 2016-17, up from 520 in 2013-14, the children's charity said.
The increase may be due to coverage of high-profile cases, it said.
North Wales Police recorded the most over that time with 1,317 cases, while South Wales Police saw 690, Dyfed-Powys had 569 and Gwent Police recorded 58....