Court dismisses groping complaint against former Gov. Andrew Cuomo


Former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo will briefly appear virtually at a court hearing before Judge Holly Trexler on Friday, January 7, 2022, in Albany, NY Hans Pennink, Pool / AP photo

ALBANY – An Albany criminal court ruled Friday to drop a complaint of violent contact against former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The lawsuit, based on allegations that Cuomo groped a former employee, was the only charge against the former governor after a year of facing a long list of allegations on various subjects and last August over the sexual complaints Harassment had resigned.

Albany County’s District Attorney David Soares announced earlier this week that there was insufficient evidence to unequivocally pursue the allegations. In a trial on Friday, Judge Holly Trexler did not object to his decision to drop it.

“The prosecution has absolute discretion … to pursue a particular case,” said Trexler. “The courts cannot and cannot intervene in the district attorney’s discretion.”

The mostly virtual approach itself was quite disappointing.

Cuomo only appeared on camera for a second when attorney Rita Glavin panned the camera to show he was in the room with her. He didn’t speak.

Disability rights activist Michael Carey attempted to deliver a letter to Trexler asking her to force Soares to pursue the case; Court officials did not let him deliver the letter.

The case stemmed from allegations made by former Governor Brittany Commisso, who accused Cuomo of groping her at the Executive Mansion in 2020.

Soares said that while he found her credible and cooperative, there just wasn’t enough evidence for him to move forward.

“Law enforcement agencies and police officers can act lawfully as soon as they have a probable reason to believe that an event has occurred,” he said on Friday morning during a regular appearance on the public radio station WAMC.

“That is a very, very, very little burden. It is a completely different burden than the burden of the prosecutors, which is unequivocal evidence. “

Cuomo has denied touching Commiso inappropriately and Glavin praised the decision to drop the case.

“As the governor said, it just didn’t happen,” Glavin told reporters on a Zoom call.

The Commisso’s allegations can still lead to a civil action.

And there are several other potential legal actions that Cuomo still has to contend with, including attempts by the state’s Joint Public Ethics Committee to potentially get the $ 5.1 million he received for writing his memoirs on the pandemic get back.

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