Brett Kavanaugh faces new sexual misconduct allegations as two men claim they assaulted Dr Ford ahead of her testimony

Peter Stubley

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh has been questioned over allegations he raped a woman aboard a boat and assaulted a girlfriend in a bar.

The new claims – which add to the complaints already already made by Christine Blasey Ford, Deborah Ramirez, and Julie Swetnick - were revealed as the judge prepared to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Judge Kavanaugh described the claims as “outrageous” when he was interviewed by investigators in a conference call released by the committee.

“It’s trying to take me down, trying to take down my family,” said the 53-year-old who currently serves as a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

He added: “It’s bad – it’s doing damage to the Supreme Court, it’s doing damage to the country. It’s doing damage to this process. It’s become a total feeding frenzy, you know? Every... just unbelievable.”

Dr Ford, a university professor, has described how Mr Kavanaugh tried to force himself on her at a party while they were both high school students in Maryland in 1982.

Two men have since come forward independently to say that they were responsible for the “encounter” and not Mr Kavanaugh, according to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

One “described his recollection of their interaction in some detail” in two interviews and written statements, while the second made his claim over the phone to committee staff.

Ms Ramirez claims that Mr Kavanaugh exposed himself to her during a drunken dormitory party at Yale University while third accuser Julie Swetnick says the judge was present during a gang rape at a party in 1982.

In the conference call with Senate investigators, the judge said he had been friendly with Ms Ramirez but denied any sexual or romantic encounters.

“This specific incident alleged did not happen, and I don’t recall the general party that she’s describing in particular," he said.

Mr Kavanaugh also denied any involvement in gang rapes as described by Ms Swetnick.

“This didn’t happen. I’ve never done anything like that," he said. "This is an outrage for this kind of thin, uncorroborated, 35-year-old accusation to be leveled in this fashion at this time.... I’ve never had a threesome or more than a threesome.”

The allegation about the rape on the boat in August 1985 was made by an unidentified man from Rhode Island in a phone call to Democratic senator Sheldon Whitehouse on 24 September.

He claimed that a “close acquaintance” told him she had been sexually assaulted by two drunken men she referred to as Brett and Mark after meeting them at a local bar.

The man said that he and a friend went to the harbour at Newport and “physically confronted the two men, leaving them with significant injuries”. He reported it after seeing Mr Kavanaugh’s high school yearbook photo on TV.

Asked about the claims, Mr Kavanaugh said: “I was not in Newport, haven’t been on a boat in Newport. This is just completely made up, or at least not me.”

According to the transcript of the conference call, the man who made the complaint has tweeted criticism of Donald Trump as “the parasite that occupies the White House” and “the domestic terrorist in the Oval Office”.

The claim that Mr Kavanaugh assaulted a woman he was dating in 1998 while working for the independent counsel Ken Starr was made in an anonymous letter to Republican senator Cory Gardner.

It read: ‘My daughter occasionally socialized with Brett Kavanaugh. Her friend was dating him. When they left the bar (under the influence of alcohol) they were all shocked when Brett Kavanaugh shoved her friend up against the wall very aggressively and sexually. Her friend (still traumatized) called by daughter ... wondering what to do about it.”

Mr Kavanaugh said: “We’re dealing with an anonymous letter about an anonymous person and an anonymous friend. It’s ridiculous. Total twilight zone. And no, I’ve never done anything like that.”