Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill will have his law license suspended for 30 days over allegations that the Republican groped a lawmaker and three other women during a drunken stupor, the state’s Supreme Court ruled Monday.
Indiana’s attorney disciplinary commission “proved by clear and convincing evidence that [Hill] committed the criminal act of battery,” the court ruled. One of the commission’s hearing officers recommended in February that Hill receive a 60-day suspension for allegedly groping the women during a party celebrating the end of the 2018 legislative session.
“The long, lingering, and meandering touches described by the four women and others, the various reactions of those who experienced or observed those touches, and the numerous other accounts of (Hill’s) conduct at the bar, all offer ample support for the hearing officer’s ultimate finding on this point,” the court noted.
Democratic state Rep. Mara Candelaria Reardon testified that Hill touched her shoulder while sliding his hand down her dress to grab her buttocks.
“A squeeze, a firm grasp,” she said, noting that the attorney general smelled of alcohol and was glassy-eyed. (RELATED: Attorney General Denies Allegations He Groped And Told Women To ‘Show A Little Skin’)
Hill denied doing anything wrong, testifying in October 2019 that he touched Reardon’s back while leaning in and trying to hear a conversation she was having with another person.
“Absolutely not,” Hill said during the testimony when asked whether he grabbed Reardon’s backside.
Hill also disputed testimony from three female legislative staffers in their 20s who said Indiana’s top law enforcer attempted similar actions during the party. His attorneys said his actions were misinterpreted, and they argue that Hill should not be suspended because he did not do anything improper as a lawyer.
The conservative attorney general is a “disgrace” whose conduct was “repulsive,” Lauren Ganapini, the state’s Democratic Party executive director, told The Associated Press. (RELATED: 4 Women File Lawsuit Against Indiana’s AG For Allegedly Groping Them While Drunk)
“Now the uncertainty created by his punishment could tip the state into a constitutional crisis,” Ganapini said of the problem Hill’s suspension presents to the state.
Indiana’s constitution requires the attorney general to be “duly licensed to practice law in Indiana,” though it does not specify what happens if the official is disciplined.
Ganapini added: “Over and over, Indiana Republicans failed to remove him. They now own his shameful conduct and the crisis it’s created.”
Hill is dismissing calls from Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb for his resignation since the groping allegations became public in 2018. Holcomb, who has not responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment, is responsible for appointing Hill’s successor in the event he resigns.
Hill is a pro-life Republican and is seeking a second term despite the allegations. He also frequently makes public gestures expressing his position on abortion.
He visited a South Bend, Indiana, funeral home in February to commemorate the 2,411 babies whose remains the late abortionist Ulrich Klopfer hoarded. The babies could not be buried in the states that their mothers were from because their bodies were too deteriorated for transportation, Hill said at the time.
Hill’s office did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.
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