No Charges For Hill, Accusers to Seek Civil Suit
INDIANAPOLIS - A special prosecutor investigating allegations against Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill says he will not file battery or sexual battery charges against the state's top law enforcement officer. Fort Wayne-based Sigler Law LLC Attorney Dan Sigler says there is not enough evidence to move forward on the two potential charges. The group of accusers, which has grown to four, have announced plans to file civil lawsuits against Hill, the attorney general's office and the state of Indiana.
Sigler filed his conclusion with the Marion County Superior Court after reviewing findings from an investigation by the Indiana Inspector General's office and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police. The investigation included 56 witness interviews. In his filing with the court, Sigler cited "insufficient evidence of Hill's intent to touch the victims in a rude, insolent or angry manner to constitute a battery, and a lack of evidence of force with respect to the statutory requirements of sexual battery. The investigation was thorough and fair, and provided a significant amount of witness input and documentary evidence to make an adequate assessment. That assessment concludes that the findings did not demonstrate the crucial elements needed to support a conviction of battery or sexual battery under the law."
Hill has maintained his innocence since the accusations publicly surfaced several months ago. The alleged sexually improper incidents are said by the accusers to have taken place at a gathering in March. The case was referred to a special prosecutor in July after Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry determined a conflict of interest would exist if his office handled an investigation.
During a press conference Tuesday morning that included Attorney Hannah Kaufman Joseph of Indianapolis-based Katz Korin Cunningham PC who is representing accusers State Representative Mara Candelaria Reardon (D-12), Indiana Senate Democrat Communications Director Gabrielle McLemore, Indiana State Senate Republican Legislative Assistant Niki DaSilva and Indiana House Democrat Legislative Assistant Samantha Lozano, who revealed her identity Tuesday after previously filing anonymously.
"We are here today to announce that these four women have taken the initial steps to pursue civil claims against Attorney General Hill, the state of Indiana and the attorney general's office," Kaufman Joseph said. "All Hoosier workers, including these women, all state employees and elected officials are entitled to the protection of state and federal law against retaliation, sexual harassment and related claims that arise. We want to say one quick word about timing: we have been working on these claims and preparing to pursue federal charge of discrimination and a Indiana tort claim notice, which is the initial steps that will be taken to pursue civil litigation, and we came forward today when we found out yesterday that the inspector general and special prosecutor were going to be making their reports today."
Indiana Inspector General Lori Torres, whose office released findings of a several-month investigation, said "while the findings of our investigation did reveal unacceptable behavior by a state officeholder, and which significantly impacted those affected, we respect the grounds on which Special Prosecutor Sigler made his decision."