A senior aide to Andrew Cuomo has resigned after a report found the New York governor sexually harassed 11 women.
Melissa DeRosa, who was Mr Cuomo’s secretary, has been linked in the report to efforts to cover up the governor’s actions and retaliate against one of his accusers.
In the 168-page report by the state attorney general, Ms DeRosa’s name was mentioned 187 times.
‘This is not who I am’ – Cuomo’s sexual harassment denial
She said in a statement: “Personally, the past two years have been emotionally and mentally trying.
“I am forever grateful for the opportunity to have worked with such talented colleagues on behalf of our state.”
Mr Cuomo was found to have groped, kissed, or made suggestive comments to 11 women in violation of the law, prompting prosecutors to launch a criminal investigation and calls for him to resign or for him to be impeached – including President Joe Biden saying he should quit.
The 63-year-old has so far resisted the calls for him to step down, but he could face impeachment and removal from office by state lawmakers.
The New York State Assembly’s Judiciary Committee has scheduled a meeting to address impeachment proceedings on Monday.
Joe Biden calls on Andrew Cuomo to resign
Meanwhile, a former employee in Mr Cuomo’s office, known only as “Executive Assistant #1”, told state investigators that he fondled her breast on one occasion.
In a TV statement responding to the attorney general’s report, Mr Cuomo denied all allegations against him and singled out the unnamed employee’s claims, saying: “Another allegation that I groped a woman in my office. That never happened.”
Allegations against Mr Cuomo, who has been governor since 2011, first emerged late last year.
There were multiple claims that he inappropriately touched and sexually harassed women who worked with him or whom he met at public events.