Female Democrat and prominent #METOO-er who appeared in Time is accused of groping young male aide at softball game

Friday, February 9, 2018
By Paul Martin

California Democratic Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia accused of molesting
Accused of stroking aide’s back, squeezing buttocks and trying to grab crotch
All said to have happened in dugout of a legislative softball game back in 2014
Daniel Fierro was 25 when he claims he was sexually harassed by Cristina Garcia
Her photo appeared in Time Magazine’s Person of the Year issue for #MeToo

9 February 2018

A prominent female campaigner in the Me Too movement has been accused of groping a young male aide.

California Democratic Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia, the head of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and a leading figure in the state’s anti-sexual harassment movement, is accused of groping a male staffer from another lawmaker’s office.

Daniel Fierro said Thursday that Garcia stroked his back, squeezed his buttocks and attempted to touch his crotch in a dugout after a legislative softball game in 2014.

Garcia, whose photo appeared in Time Magazine’s Person of the Year issue on being one of the ‘Silence Breakers’ on sexual harassment, is now being investigated by the Assembly.

Fierro didn’t report it at the time but in January told his former boss, Democratic Assemblyman Ian Calderon, who reported it to Assembly leaders.

Garcia’s spokeswoman Teala Schaff said the assemblywoman learned January 23 a complaint was filed but was given no details and only learned the specifics of the allegations from Politico, who first published the accusation.

‘Every complaint about sexual harassment should be taken seriously and I will participate fully in any investigation that takes place,’ the Los Angeles-area lawmaker said in a statement thursday.

‘I have zero recollection of engaging in inappropriate behavior and such behavior is inconsistent with my values.’

The investigation into Garcia is one of many in statehouses nationwide following a wave of sexual misconduct allegations against men in power since an October expose of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

Fierro said he decided to tell Calderon about the incident because of Garcia’s outspokenness in the #MeToo movement, which references the social media campaign used by millions to tell personal experiences with sexual harassment.

‘If the person leading the charge on it isn’t credible it just ends up hurting the credibility of these very real stories,’ Fierro said.

Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, a Democrat, said in a statement he is directing human resources to reach out to Garcia’s staff to make sure they feel safe.

‘I trust that while the investigation proceeds, Assemblymember Garcia will respond appropriately and in a way that fortifies the Legislature’s effort to create a new climate,’ he said.

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