Originally published on June 30, 2018 11:03 am
Sen. Randy Baumgardner is now facing a second formal sexual harassment complaint at the Colorado Capitol. Megan Creeden, who served as an intern for another lawmaker, said she filed the complaint "hoping it will trigger something to happen."
An earlier investigation into allegations against the Republican from Hot Sulphur Springs concluded that “it appears more likely than not that Baumgardner grabbed and slapped a legislative aide’s buttocks four times during the 2016 legislative session.”
Senate leadership has had the investigation’s results for about two weeks. Creeden said she made her complaint official because she has not seen Baumgardner held publicly accountable for his actions.
“All I want is for that behavior to not be something aides and interns and legislators in the future have to deal with and put up with," Creeden said.
Creeden alleges in her complaint that Baumgardner made an inappropriate sexual comment to her in 2016 and then on a separate occasion pressured her to drink with him in his office.
She added that she also wanted to support the other woman who filed a complaint against Baumgardner. That woman, a former legislative aide, has asked to remain anonymous for fear of retribution. The formal complaint process allows for confidentiality.
“I think someone needs to be the one to send the message that this behavior isn’t OK and I don’t know that has happened yet,” said Creeden.
Creeden first publicly shared the allegations with us in November, but making the complaint official triggers an investigation.
Baumgardner declined to comment on the latest complaint. He has continued to maintain that he’s done nothing wrong. Meanwhile Republican Senate President Kevin Grantham said progress is being made on the first complaint and he hopes to have a decision before the end of the week.
“There are more things in the report that we have to deal with than simply a bottom line paragraph," he said. “We have a duty to examine this report in its totality."
Senate Democrats issued a later last week calling for Baumgardner’s resignation and have expressed frustration with how long the process has taken.
“We are not reaching a definitive conclusion because the deliberative process is not happening quickly,” said Sen. Daniel Kagan from Cherry Hills Village. “It just seems to be languishing in the office of one individual.”
But Grantham said he’s being thorough and will not rush a decision.
“Unfortunately we’re seeing honestly some outside threats to the integrity of this process from outside the building, from outside groups,” said Grantham. “Partisan political pressure to make snap decisions, snap judgments on these complaints, questioning the pace that we’re working at here. We want to be deliberate, exacting, with what we are going to do.”
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