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Civics & Democracy

Senate Report: Mayor Garcetti ‘Likely Knew Or Should Have Known' About Former Aide's Alleged Sexual Misconduct

Eric Garcetti is seen in a blue suit and red tie. He is testifying during his hearing to become ambassador to India.
Eric Garcetti testifies during his hearing to become ambassador to India.
(Courtesy U.S Senate)
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"It is extremely unlikely" that Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti was unaware of the sexual harassment accusations against his former top advisor, Rick Jacobs, says a new report released on Tuesday by the office of U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley.

Investigators said they’d interviewed 15 witnesses and read 25 depositions.

The Iowa Republican called for the probe as senators consider Garcetti's nomination to serve as President Biden's ambassador to India.

There was no immediate comment from a Garcetti spokesperson.

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When the Mayor testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in Dec. 2021, he said harassment and discrimination had no place in the workplace or in society.

"I want to say unequivocally that I never witnessed, nor was it brought to my attention, the behavior that's been alleged," Garcetti said. "And I also want to assure you, if it had been, I would have immediately taken action to stop that."

Jacobs has denied the allegations.

The 23-page report says the investigation was launched after whistleblowers approached Grassley's office. It finds that "it is more probable than not that Mr. Jacobs sexually harassed multiple individuals, and made racist comments towards others."

It adds that "based on witness testimony, this behavior was pervasive, widespread, and notorious," and "several" people "told investigators that Mayor Garcetti was aware of this behavior."

Investigators also reviewed 18 depositions and talked to five former and current individuals who worked closely with Garcetti and claimed they never witnessed any of Jacobs's wrongdoings.

However, the report said many of the people did not appear to be credible because their statements contradicted many of Jacobs's comments, text messages and photo evidence.

Grassley is lifting his hold on Garcetti's nomination, but says he'll vote "no" if it comes up for a vote before the full Senate.

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