New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's resignation doesn't change the status of a criminal investigation in Albany County stemming from accusations that he groped a former aide.
After the embattled governor announced on Tuesday he would be stepping down from his post effective in two weeks, paving the way for Lieutenant Gov. Kathy Hochul to assume the role, Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple said the development changes nothing with his inquiry.
“It was never about his office, although I appreciate him putting the people of New York first and stepping aside,” Apple said, according to the Times Union.
Apple, who is acting on a complaint filed by Brittany Commisso, a woman who claimed that Cuomo reached under her shirt and grabbed her breast at the Executive Mansion, said he met with District Attorney David Soares earlier in the day and expects to convene with the top prosecutor almost daily until the investigation comes to a close.
Soares's office declined to comment on Cuomo's resignation, though it stated the criminal inquiry is still active.
"We will not be making a comment about the resignation at this time. The inquiry into criminal conduct in our jurisdiction remains open and pending,” a spokesperson told the news outlet.
New York Attorney General Letitia James released a report last week that detailed the allegations of 11 women who accused Cuomo of sexual harassment and intimidation.
Soares was the first district attorney in the Empire State to express interest in opening an investigation into Cuomo's conduct after James declined to prosecute the governor and left the option open for local jurisdictions.
Commisso was referred to only as "Executive Assistant #1" in James's report, though she revealed her identity during a taped interview.
“It was the right thing to do," Commisso said regarding her decision to contact law enforcement in a segment of CBS This Morning. "The governor needs to be held accountable."
"What he did to me was a crime," she said. "He broke the law.”
Cuomo has repeatedly denied the accusations, and he maintained his innocence during his resignation. The governor indicated he has chosen to step down due to the lawsuits and impending impeachment proceedings that serve as "distractions" for New York residents who should be focused on the coronavirus pandemic.
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Original Author: Jake Dima