San Diego, CA- A second person has come forward with sexual harassment allegations against openly gay GOP House Candidate Carl DeMaio who must once again go on the defensive.
DeMaio’s second accusers is 25 year-old Justin Harper, a veteran and campaign worker who says he had a disturbing encounter with DeMaio in the restroom of the candidate’s campaign headquarters, according to KPBS.
Harper told KPBS that last June while he was using a urinal when DeMaio, who was in a stall approached him just stood there. When Harper turned around, he alleges DeMaio exposed himself
Of course, DeMaio and his campaign accuse his contender for the 52nd congressional district, Scott Peters of being behind the latest round of allegations. Bloomberg reported that with just a day to go before the general election, the DeMaio and Peters are in a dead heat.
In a statement to KPBS a representative for DeMaio said Peters had “reached a new low” by “resurrecting this outrageous lie” with just days to go before the election. The representative also lashed out at KPBS and other news stations for reporting on the sexual harassment allegations without proof.
KPBS noted there are inconsistencies in stories from both Harper and DeMaio.
This is the second person to come forward against the openly gay Republican. In early October, Todd Bosnich, also a former DeMaio staffer, accused his boss of masturbating in front of him. Bosnich said one night DeMaio called him to his office and when he entered he found DeMaio pleasuring himself behind his desk.
When Bosnich’s allegations surfaced, DeMaio denied them, accusing Peters of running a smear campaign against him and later accused Bosnich of breaking into his campaign headquarters. Bosnich has never been formally charged for the break in.
Harper would actually be the third person to accuse DeMaio of masturbating in front of them. In 2009, a San Diego city employee alleged he walked into a men’s room at San Diego City Hall and found DeMaio masturbating. DeMaio denied the allegations and took a lie detector test, which he passed.
Earlier this month, DeMaio spoke with the Hill, saying he was facing such salacious allegations because he is a gay candidate.
Neither Harper nor Bosnich have filed a formal complaints against DeMaio so they haven’t sought a cash settlement. Both men, are devoted Republicans and said they wrangled over their decision to come forward.
The lesson we can take away from this is that sexual harassment is usually one person’s word against another’s. Proving sexual harassment can be very difficult because of this and victims who choose to seek compensation must have a sexual harassment attorney on their side.
In order for a sexual harassment victim to prevail in court, they must back their allegations with a thorough investigation and compelling case. To do this the victim needs to retain an accomplished sexual harassment attorney to build a solid civil case.