Andrew Cuomo accuser Karen Hinton says he was ‘aroused’ when he hugged her: 'I pulled away, he brought me back'
In her statement, Cuomo's former aide, Karen Hinton said: 'It was inappropriate. We both were married,' adding the hug was 'too much' and 'intimate'
Karen Hinton, the ex-aide of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who had earlier slammed NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and Cuomo for their treatment of female staffers, has now said that the governor was physically “aroused” when he allegedly hugged her in an "inappropriate" and "unethical" embrace in a California hotel room, 21 years ago.
Speaking to WNYC radio on Monday, March 15, Hinton said, “He approached me, embraced too tightly, too long and was aroused. I felt extremely uncomfortable and actually shocked. Nothing had ever happened that way between the two of us.”
Hinton first went public with her allegations against Cuomo on March 6. She had said that the then-Cabinet member made a pass at her during a meeting that was supposed to be about a news conference. She said that when Cuomo hugged her, she could physically feel he was sexually aroused.
"He started asking me personal questions. I was uncomfortable with that conversation. So I stood up to leave and he walked across from his couch and embraced me intimately. It was not just a hug. It was an intimate embrace. I pulled away. He brought me back. I pulled away again and I said 'look I need some sleep, I am going,'" Hinton told News 4 in her first TV interview about the incident. "It was inappropriate. We both were married. I worked for him and it was too much to make it so personal and intimate," she had said about the encounter.
Back when her allegations first went public, on March 6, a spokesman for Cuomo denied Hinton's claim, saying, "This did not happen. Karen Hinton is a known antagonist of the governor's who is attempting to take advantage of this moment to score cheap points with made-up allegations from 21 years ago. All women have the right to come forward and tell their story -- however, it's also the responsibility of the press to consider self-motivation. This is reckless."
As per an NBC News report, two people who have known Hinton for years have said that Hinton confided in them about the alleged hotel incident years ago. However, as per the same report, two Cuomo allies who worked closely with Hinton at the US Department of Housing and Urban Development have said that they found the allegation nearly impossible to believe -- the supposedly outspoken Hinton had never mentioned the hotel incident with Cuomo to them.
Prior to the allegations of the inappropriate hugging, Hinton wrote a scathing op-ed on Wednesday, February 24, on New York Daily News where she slammed NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and Cuomo for their treatment of female staffers, corroborating the "bullying" claims made by former Cuomo aide Lindsey Boylan, who accused the governor of sexually harassing her. Hinton blasted both the politicians in the op-ed entitled, “How to counter penis politics,” which painted Cuomo as a 1950s patriarch and de Blasio as a hypocrite who privately employed a “hectoring, inflexible approach that bordered on sanctimony.”