Fe­male lawyer ac­cuses Jus­tice Clarence Thomas of grop­ing her in 1999

The Star (St. Lucia) - - INTERNATIONAL - -huff­in­g­ton­post.com

Years af­ter his Se­nate con­fir­ma­tion hear­ings were roiled by ac­cu­sa­tions that he sex­u­ally ha­rassed Anita Hill, an­other woman has come for­ward to ac­cuse Supreme Court Jus­tice Clarence Thomas of grop­ing her.

Moira Smith, vice pres­i­dent and gen­eral coun­sel at En­star Nat­u­ral Gas Co., told the Na­tional Law Jour­nal that the jus­tice grabbed her with­out her con­sent in 1999, when she met him at a Tru­man Foun­da­tion din­ner.

Veteran Supreme Court re­porter Mar­cia Coyle writes that Smith de­scribed the en­counter which al­legedly took place when she was a 23-yearold Tru­man scholar on Face­book ear­lier this month. She has since de­ac­ti­vated her Face­book page.

“He groped me while I was set­ting the table, sug­gest­ing I should sit ‘right next to him,’” Smith wrote, ac­cord­ing to the NLJ.

Smith told the NLJ that Thomas “cupped his hand around my butt and pulled me pretty close to him” and later “squeezed” her be­hind dur­ing a June 1999 din­ner for Tru­man schol­ars at the home of Louis Blair, then head of the Tru­man Foun­da­tion.

The NLJ spoke with sev­eral of Smith’s for­mer room­mates and fel­low Tru­man schol­ars who said they re­mem­bered her de­scrib­ing the in­ci­dent at the time.

Through a Supreme Court spokes­woman, Thomas de­nied Smith’s al­le­ga­tions. “This claim is pre­pos­ter­ous and it never hap­pened,” he said in the state­ment.

Dur­ing Thomas’ Supreme Court con­fir­ma­tion hear­ings in 1991, Hill, a law pro­fes­sor, tes­ti­fied that Thomas had ha­rassed her a decade ear­lier, when he was her su­per­vi­sor at the U.S. Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion and the Equal Em­ploy­ment Op­por­tu­nity Com­mis­sion.

Ear­lier this month, Hill wrote a Bos­ton Globe op-ed about her ex­pe­ri­ence, sparked by Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Don­ald Trump’s recorded boasts about grab­bing women “by the pussy” and kiss­ing women with­out their con­sent.

“What I learned in 1991 is no less true to­day and no less im­por­tant for peo­ple to un­der­stand: re­sponses to sex­ual ha­rass­ment and other forms of sex­ual vi­o­lence must start with a be­lief that women mat­ter as much as the pow­er­ful men they en­counter at work or at school, whether those men are bosses or pro­fes­sors, col­leagues or fel­low stu­dents,” Hill wrote.

You may re­mem­ber Jus­tice Clarence Thomas’ con­tro­ver­sial case in the 90’s when he was ac­cused of sex­ual ha­rass­ment by Anita Hill.

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