Garcetti gave ‘unintentionally blended numbers’ on sex allegations involving advisor, rep says

THE LA TIMES:

As U.S. senators weigh the veracity of sexual harassment allegations lodged against Mayor Eric Garcetti’s former advisor and the mayor’s handling of the alleged claims, Garcetti twice made an inaccurate statement to reporters about witnesses in the case.

When pressed by reporters about the Senate’s concerns, Garcetti told two television reporters on Thursday that 40 people “under oath” didn’t provide corroboration to bolster the sexual harassment allegations made against his former aide, Rick Jacobs. The accusations have roiled Garcetti’s bid to become U.S. ambassador to India and have sparked an investigation by a Republican senator.

“I think it’s crystal clear,” Garcetti told Fox 11 News at a ribbon-cutting event for a senior community development in Pico-Robertson. “Forty people interviewed under oath, who said there’s zero corroboration. That speaks for itself.”

The mayor’s figure of 40 individuals “is inaccurate,” said Greg Smith, the attorney for Los Angeles Police Department Officer Matthew Garza, a former member of Garcetti’s security detail who is suing the city.

In all, 32 people have given deposition testimony under oath in the lawsuit brought by Garza, according Rob Wilcox, a spokesman for the city attorney’s office. That figure includes Garza and Jacobs. At least seven of those witnesses, not including Garza and Jacobs, gave testimony that could bolster Garza’s claims, according to a Times review of the deposition statements.

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