Former Kentucky state lawmaker John Arnold is fighting a guilty verdict in his ethics trial. His attorney filed an appeal in Franklin Circuit Court yesterday asking a judge to rescind a ruling by a state ethics panel that found Arnold guilty of abusing his office when he sexually harassed and assaulted three state House employees.
That ruling consisted of a public reprimand of Arnold, as well as $3,000 in fines.
After a nearly seven-month investigation, the Kentucky State Police say investigators found no evidence that former Legislative Research Commission executive director Bobby Sherman shredded work-related documents to cover-up information on sexual harassment within the state legislature.
After hours of deliberation and sparring with his defense attorney—not to mention the news media—a full quorum of the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission on Wednesday voted to reprimand and fine former state Rep. John Arnold.
It was the second, and final, hearing in the ethics case brought against the Western Kentucky Democrat by female state House staffers.
Kentucky Representative Joni Jenkins says if a special legislative session is called for later this year, ethics reform should be on the agenda.
During the session, Jenkins filed an amendment to an unrelated bill that would reconfigure the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission, which has come under fire after it found former lawmaker John Arnold not guilty of sexual harassment charges, but the Senate didn’t take up that bill.
The ethics trial against former lawmaker John Arnold may continue. Because the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission did not consider a motion to dismiss the case against the West Kentucky lawmaker in a hearing last week, the case may go forward.
The two female statehouse employees who previously accused Kentucky Rep. John Arnold of sexually harassing them say another Democratic lawmaker acted inappropriately, this time on an out-of-state trip conducting official legislative business.
Legislative Research Commission employees Cassaundra Cooper and Yolanda Costner allege that Rep. Jim Gooch, D-Providence, threw a pair of women's panties onto a dining table at a restaurant during the Southern Legislative Conference held in Mobile, Alabama last year.
Originally published on Sat April 12, 2014 2:22 pm
Calling it a "cover up," Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky contrasted how he handled a sexual harassment scandal differently than likely Democratic nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes has in recent months.
Two women who made formal sexual harassment complaints against former Kentucky State Representative John Arnold have filed a motion with the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission asking it to reconsider its ruling that cleared Arnold of ethics charges.