Attorney General Curtis Hill has been accused of groping four women – three legislative staffers and a lawmaker – at a post-session party in March.
Hill denies allegations, and in a statement, he questions the fairness of an investigation initiated by legislative leaders into the accusations.
He says no one ever contacted him during that investigation, he doesn’t know who’s accusing him, and legislators denied him access to a report on the investigation.
In an updated statement, he stresses he won’t resign. And he calls an internal legislative investigation into the allegations against him “prejudicial.”
In statement, @AGCurtisHill stresses he won't resign:
"The people of the State of Indiana have given me the highest honor to have elected me with overwhelming support to the position of Attorney General. I will continue to honor my commitment to the citizens of this great state."
— Brandon J. Smith (@brandonjsmith5) July 3, 2018
Republican leaders David Long (R-Fort Wayne) and Brian Bosma (R-Indianapolis) initiated an investigation into their own liability as employers after the accusations. A report was prepared by an outside attorney – it found legislative leaders aren’t liable because Hill is not a member of the legislative branch.
The report urged Bosma and Long to discuss the allegations with Hill. They did so and a joint statement from all four leaders says the matter is resolved “to the satisfaction of the employees involved.”
But one of those legislative leaders is calling for Hill’s resignation: Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane (D-Anderson).
He says Hill falls short of the ethical standards of his office and can no longer adequately represent the best interests of Hoosiers. He wants Hill to resign.
Gov. Eric Holcomb applauded legislative leadership’s reaction to the allegations in a statement released Tuesday morning.
“We took great care to update our sexual harassment policies for the executive, legislative and judicial branches in the past few months. No one should be subjected to unwanted sexual advances,” Holcomb said in a statement.
Holcomb is currently on vacation in a remote area of Montana, and says he won’t comment further until he’s back in Indiana on Wednesday night.
The governor signed a law in March mandating sexual harassment training for all employees of Indiana’s executive and judicial branches.
Indiana Democratic Party Chair John Zody says Hill should resign.
He calls the allegations “beyond troubling and wildly inappropriate.” He says they raise questions as to whether Hill can still do his job.
Indiana Republican Party Kyle Hupfer stops just short of such a call. He says his party has zero tolerance for sexual harassment – and that actions like the ones Hill is accused of “have no place in public life or anywhere else.”
Holcomb would appoint Hill’s replacement if the Republican attorney general resigns.
This story has been updated.