INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Embattled Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill is calling for a “fair and thorough” independent investigation into allegations that he groped several women at a bar in March.
In a statement released Friday afternoon, Hill says he’s been falsely accused and is innocent until proven guilty. He said he would not resign, despite calls from Gov. Eric Holcomb and leaders in the state legislature to do so.
Four different women accused Hill of touching them inappropriately as lawmakers and staff celebrated the end of the legislative session at an Indianapolis bar on March 15. One of the women, State Rep. Mara Candelaria Reardon (D-12th District), stepped forward Friday and detailed her interaction with Hill in an op-ed that appeared in the Times of Northwest Indiana.
Hill denies any wrongdoing and called the allegations "vicious and false." He said he didn't grab or touch anyone inappropriately. The state inspector general has opened an investigation into the case.
Here's Hill's statement in part:
“I now stand now stand falsely accused of some of the same crimes I spent 28 years prosecuting. Yet without a thorough investigation—without the right to face my accusers and review the evidence against me—I am convicted by public officials demanding my resignation. I believed that the standard in this country is that you are innocent until proven guilty—not guilty until proven innocent.
"I am not resigning. The allegations against me are vicious and false. At no time did I ever grab or touch anyone inappropriately. The lack of fairness and the failure to recognize my constitutional rights are a complete travesty.
"Elected officials have called for my resignation without affording me any due process or conducting an actual, fair and independent investigation.
"The fact that the Governor, who appoints the Inspector General, has already determined the outcome of the investigation eliminates the ability of the Inspector General to conduct a fair and independent investigation.
"This fundamental lack of fairness and due process regarding this prejudicial so-called 'investigation' is in violation of the principles on which this country was founded.
"I demand an independent investigation by the Marion County Prosecutor's Office, where my constitutional rights are respected and protected. Once the investigation is complete and I am exonerated, I would hope that my good name is properly restored with the same vigor with which it has been tarnished."
The Marion County Prosecutor's Office issued this statement:
"We only became aware by way of media reports that the Inspector General has initiated an investigation and that Attorney General Hill has demanded an 'independent investigation' by our office. We will review this new information to determine the appropriate next step."