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Virginia Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax has a new statement on sexual assault allegation

Posted at 1:28 PM, Feb 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-06 15:45:12-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Days after Virginia Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax called a sexual assault allegation made against him a “totally fabricated story,” he has issued a new statement on the topic.

"I’d like to begin by emphasizing how important it is for us to listen to women," Fairfax, a former prosecutor, said. "I know that many survivors of sexual assault suffer in silence, and it is absolutely essential to their healing and our healing as a culture that we give all survivors the space and support to voice their stories."

Big League Politics published a report Sunday night that a California woman accused Fairfax of sexually assaulting her at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. A situation Fairfax described as consensual.

"While this allegation has been both surprising and hurtful, I also recognize that no one makes charges of this kind lightly, and I take it and this situation very seriously," his statement continued. "This has been an emotional couple of days for me and my family. And in my remarks on Monday, I think you could hear how emotional dealing with an allegation that I know is not true has been for me."

Fairfax said at no time during the sexual encounter with the accuser did she express discomfort or concern. He added she raised no concerns to him as they kept in touch in the months that followed.

"The first indication I had that she felt that anything that had happened between us 15 years ago made her uncomfortable was when I was contacted by a national media organization shortly before my inauguration in 2018," he said. "I voluntarily met with their staff, in person, told them what I knew about the encounter and responded to all of their questions. I also shared the allegation and my account of the events with a number of leaders in Richmond because then, as now, I have nothing to hide."

Fairfax's accuser has hired the legal team that represented Christine Blasey Ford after she came forward with her allegations against then Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, NPR reported.

"I would like to encourage the media, my supporters, and others to treat both the woman who made this allegation and my family with respect for how painful this situation can be for everyone involved," Fairfax continued. "I wish her no harm or humiliation, nor do I seek to denigrate her or diminish her voice. But I cannot agree with a description of events that I know is not true."