The lies and cover-up surrounding Senator David Wilson’s (R – Wasilla) harassing of a female staffer are falling apart. Reporter Liz Raines of KTVA, who was present to witness the harassment incident involving Senator David Wilson (story here) has released a statement to the press recounting her memory of events. The story, according to Raines, directly contradicts the denial of those events by Senator Wilson in the Juneau Empire (story here). Now it is Senator Wilson’s word against not one, but 2 two reporters who witnessed the incident. What would really clear things up is if Legislative Council would release the security footage of the incident.
What is arguably more troubling than Senator Wilson’s horrible behavior is the lengths his colleagues in the Alaska Senate Majority have gone to cover this up and protect him. Slapping reporters and harassing female staffers seems to be ok, as long as it’s your guy doing it. Senate leadership should be ashamed of themselves for not dealing with this when it happened. They knew and they did nothing.
Here is her statement:
At the time of the incident in question, I was preparing for a live shot outside of the House Speaker’s chambers. While I don’t recall the exact date of the incident, I do remember it was in June. My photographer had rounded the corner, and was out of sight. I was rehearsing my script when I saw Sen. David Wilson approach the doors of the House Speaker’s chambers.
I heard a member of the House Majority’s staff repeatedly tell Wilson to leave. As I watched Wilson persist in his pursuit to approach the doors, I became increasingly uncomfortable because I could see the staff member becoming more and more visibly shaken, trying to find a way to get Wilson to leave.
At one point, he pulled out his cell phone and started trying to press it to the door, indicating that he was going to record the conversation on the other side of the doors. As the staff member tried to prevent him from doing so, he placed the phone between her legs. I heard the staff member mention that she was wearing a skirt and indicate to Wilson that his action was inappropriate. At that time, I felt compelled to intervene. I told Wilson I was going to have my photographer film what was happening. Wilson left.
After Wilson left, the staff member was visibly shaking. She told the House Speaker what had happened and I did the same. She thanked me for intervening, and expressed disbelief that it had taken so much to get Sen. Wilson to leave.
The staff member didn’t want coverage at the time, and I didn’t pursue the incident.
After having spoken with the House Speaker, I believed the issue would be taken up as a personnel matter by the legislature.