Hudson County Democratic Organization Chair Amy DeGise is voicing her support for Katie Brennan, who says she was raped during last year’s gubernatorial contest, saying it is time to “better serve sexual assault survivors seeking justice.”By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“Katie Brennan is an amazing community organizer, a gifted public policy thinker and an exceptional leader in our community and I am proud to call her one of my committee members,” DeGise said in a statement.
“What she endured is horrible, and it’s clear that the system failed her. Katie followed all the proper steps that are demanded of victims and was still unable to receive the justice she sought. We need to take a hard look at how this system is set up and work to improve it. All administrations must comprehensively review their policies regarding sexual harassment and hiring to identify systemic failures, and I understand that the Murphy administration will be doing so in the coming months.”
She also called on the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office to meet with her and victim advocacy groups to discuss how “to better serve sexual assault survivors seeking justice.”
Earlier today, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced that the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office would be taking over the case, citing conflict of interest statutes – although his office seemed to indicate Prosecutor Esther Suarez did nothing wrong since she wasn’t personally involved with the investigation, what had been closed last year.
Yesterday Brennan went public in exclaiming that Albert Alvarez, until recently the chief of staff of the New Jersey Schools Development Authority, raped her during a campaign event for Murphy last year.
At the time, Brennan was a volunteer and Alvarez was a high ranking official in the campaign.
Murphy has since called for an independent investigation and his administration’s hiring practices have been condemned by members of the state Senate on both sides of the aisle.