Republican Rep. Tom Reed of New York apologized and took “full responsibility” on Sunday for the sexual misconduct allegations made against him by a former lobbyist.
Reed also announced that he would not be seeking office in 2022 after his current term in Congress ends.
In a statement, Reed claimed that he had not heard of the allegations made by Nicolette Davis prior to a Washington Post article published last week.
“I hear her voice and will not dismiss her. In reflection, my personal depiction of this event is irrelevant,” he said. “Simply put, my behavior caused her pain, showed her disrespect and was unprofessional. I was wrong, I am sorry, and I take full responsibility.”
Davis told the Post in a story published Friday that in a Minneapolis pub in 2017, Reed was drunk when he put his hand on her back and then his hand outside her blouse, unhooked her bra and then moved his hand to her thigh, moving it upward.
“A drunk congressman is rubbing my back,” she told the Post that she had texted to a friend and co-worker that evening in 2017.
She told the Post she asked the person next to her on the right for help. She said he pulled Reed away from the table and out of the restaurant.
CNN has not independently confirmed the allegation by Davis made in the Post article and has been unable to reach her for comment. Reed initially denied any allegation of sexual misconduct in a statement to CNN on Friday after the Post’s story was published.
“This account of my actions is not accurate,” Reed said in a statement to CNN about the allegations on Friday. When asked in person on Capitol Hill about the allegations that same day, Reed told CNN: “We issued a statement.”
Reed said in his Sunday statement that the 2017 incident happened during a time when he was struggling with alcoholism.
“This occurred at a time in my life in which I was struggling. Upon entering treatment in 2017, I recognized that I am powerless over alcohol. I am now approaching four years of that personal lifelong journey of recovery,” Reed said in a statement. “This is in no way an excuse for anything I’ve done. Consistent with my recovery, I publicly take ownership of my past actions, offer this amends and humbly apologize again to Ms. Davis, my wife and kids, loved ones, and to all of you.”
Reed said that he would not be running for any elected office in 2022, which he stated was in keeping with a pledge when he was first elected to the House to only serve six terms.