A California district attorney has launched an investigation into Joe Biden accuser Tara Reade for potentially lying as an expert witness in court proceedings.
The Monterey County District Attorney’s office confirmed the probe on Tuesday, according to Politico. Officials are investigating whether Reade, who sat as an expert witness in a pair of sexual assault cases, lied about her qualifications to testify. Reade testified under the name Alexandra McCabe for years.
“We are investigating whether Ms. McCabe gave false testimony under oath,” Monterey County chief assistant district attorney Berkley Brannon told Politico. “We have no database or search engine to use to determine in how many cases she testified … However, that effort is ongoing.”
Reade went public with a decades-old allegation of sexual assault against Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, in March. Reade said in an interview with podcaster Katie Halper that Biden had assaulted her in a semi-private area of a gym on Capitol Hill while she was working for the then-Senator in 1993.
“We were alone, and it was the strangest thing. There was no, like, exchange really, he just had me up against the wall,” Reade claimed. “His hands were on me and underneath my clothes. And then he went down my skirt, but then up inside it and he penetrated me with his fingers.”
Biden issued his first statement on the allegation more than a month after the interview on May 1, denying Reade’s allegation completely.
“I want to address allegations by a former staffer that I engaged in misconduct 27 years ago,” Biden said. “They aren’t true. This never happened.”
“While the details of these allegations of sexual harassment and sexual assault are complicated, two things are not complicated,” he continued. “One is that women deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, and when they step forward they should be heard, not silenced. The second is that their stories should be subject to appropriate inquiry and scrutiny.”
Multiple people have said that Reade told them of the alleged assault soon after it happened or within a few years of it happening. Reade’s brother, her former neighbor, her ex-husband, and at least one anonymous friend have all said that Reade described the alleged assault to them sometime between when it happened and 1996.
Reade also claims that she filed a complaint with the Senate personnel office, although she says she did not expressly accuse Biden of sexual assault or even harassment in the report. The report or any evidence of its existence has yet to be found.
At least one detail of Reade’s story appears flawed or misremembered. Reade claims that Biden assaulted her in an unspecified “side area” somewhere between Biden’s old Senate office and the gym he frequented at the time.
A review of the area by PBS NewsHour noted that:
The layout of that route and building has not changed. A recent walk through that area showed the subway tunnel contains no out-of-view areas, like an alcove. The remaining portion of the route includes multiple stairwells as well as corridors lined with offices. It is a main thoroughfare for senators and staffers. Some former staffers told the NewsHour that if Biden did assault Reade in any of these places, it would have been a brazen attack in an area with a high risk of being seen.
Reade also changed her story in the months leading up to her accusation of sexual assault. At first, her public story was that Biden had sexually harassed her, which was in line with the stories of others accusing Biden of inappropriate touching and comments.
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