Shocking details: Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee Fired teenage intern over allegation she was raped by Congressional Black Caucus employee. Accused Rapist Also Worked For Beto O’Rourke!
A former teenage intern for Sheila Jackson Lee has claimed in a lawsuit that she was fired last year in retaliation for legal action she planned to bring against the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF) related to a sexual assault in 2015
The woman, identified by the pseudonym Jane Doe, claims that she was raped by Damien Jones, a CBCF employee,. She states that when it was learned she was pursuing legal action against the foundation, Sheila Jackson Lee fired her.
She is seeking at least $75,000 in damages for emotional duress and destroying her career.
Jones is accused of raping Doe when she was a 19-year-old intern for another member of Congress, and he was her 30-year-old supervisor at the CBCF.
The woman claims Jones got her blackout drunk and then invited her back to his home. Doe also states that Jones and his roommate both sexually assaulted her. She immediately reported the rape to D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department and had a rape kit exam performed.
She said she reported the alleged assault to the CBCF, which placed Jones on leave at the time. At that point, she did not pursue any further legal action.
Three years later, she was then employed in Jackson Lee’s office.
Buzzfeed broke the story Wednesday:
The woman said she reported the alleged rape to police and told several people, including Rep. Terri Sewell, her former boss and a distant relative of her mother’s, but did not pursue legal action at the time.
Several years later, when Jane Doe was working for Jackson Lee, the woman decided she did want to pursue legal action, and told Jackson Lee’s chief of staff Glenn Rushing in early March 2018. The woman alleges that she asked to speak with Jackson Lee about it, but a meeting never happened, and several weeks later she was fired. Jackson Lee is chair of the board for the CBCF.
After leaving the CBCF in late 2015, he continued to work in Democratic politics and recently served as the regional political director for former representative Beto O’Rourke’s Senate campaign. Chris Evans, a spokesperson for the O’Rourke campaign, said in an email to BuzzFeed News, “The Beto for Texas campaign was absolutely not aware of these allegations until today and no longer has a relationship with Damien Jones.”
Rushing told BuzzFeed News in a phone call that “We had nothing to do with any of the actions that have been cited and the person was not wrongfully terminated.” He declined to answer additional questions.
Jones, the man who Doe alleged raped her, did not respond to Buzzfeed’s request for comment.
The Accused Rapist Also Worked For Beto O’Rourke
Damien Jones, the accused rapist, most recently worked as a regional political director for Democrat Beto O’Rourke’s Senate campaign.
O’Rourke’s rep told BuzzFeed they were not aware of the allegations and cut ties with Jones.
“The Beto for Texas campaign was absolutely not aware of these allegations until today and no longer has a relationship with Damien Jones,” said a rep.
This rape lawsuit is curiously reminiscent of a similar incident involving Democrat Senator Kamala Harris.
Can't stop RT'ing this either:
Kamala Harris aide resigns after paying $400,000 in sexual harassment claim; Dem AG blamed the victim https://t.co/bF8dOxf1ai
— Herbert Reed (@Herbert_L_Reed) December 7, 2018
Jackson Lee’s office later released a statement saying that the office “adamantly denies the allegations that it retaliated against, or otherwise improperly treated, the plaintiff. It is against office policy to discuss specific details about internal personnel matters.”
The lawsuit is dated Jan. 11, but only appeared on the public docket in the US District Court for the District of Columbia on Wednesday afternoon.
The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation is a nonprofit offshoot of the powerful Congressional Black Caucus. The foundation issues reports and offers fellowships and scholarships to develop political leadership talent among young African-Americans.
Marc Banks, a spokesperson for the CBCF, claims that he did not know whether there had been any communication between the foundation and Jackson Lee’s office about Jane Doe’s plan to sue the foundation. He said that a decision to fire a congressional staffer was “outside the purview of the foundation.”
Keep in mind that Sheila Jackson Lee ― like other Democrats ― claim to be champions for women and have repeatedly slammed President Trump as a sexist.
In April 2018, Lee also announced plans to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act.
In a press release, Lee claimed: “The Violence Against Women Act is central to our nation’s effort to fight the epidemic of domestic, sexual dating violence, and stalking.”