Naomi Seligman, the former communications director to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, has filed a complaint with prosecutors claiming that Garcetti committed perjury when he denied under oath that he did not know about allegations of misconduct by a top aide and adviser.
The complaint comes as Garcetti is awaiting a confirmation vote by the U.S. Senate to be ambassador to India after his nomination cleared the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
The complaint — read it here — was filed by attorneys for Whistleblower Aid. The complaint also alleges that the mayor conspired to cover up complaints of sexual harassment against Rick Jacobs, who served as Garcetti’s deputy chief of staff and then worked on non profits connected to the mayor. He stepped down in October, 2020, but has denied the allegations.
Seligman contends that Garcetti lied in a deposition that was brought by Los Angeles police officer Matthew Garza, a member of Garcetti’s security detail. Garza claims that Garcetti witnessed some of Jacobs’ behavior but did not take steps to stop it. Jacobs called Garza’s lawsuit “pure fiction.”
Her complaint further alleges that Garcetti lied under oath during his confirmation hearing in December. Asked about the allegations by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Garcetti said that he “never witnessed nor was it brought to my attention the behavior that’s been alleged, and I want to assure you if it had been, I would have immediately taken action to stop that.”
Garcetti’s nomination passed out of the committee without objections from individual senators.
Seligman’s complaint was sent to the Justice Department, the California Attorney General and the Los Angeles District Attorney, asking them to take action. The materials also were sent to the White House, the State Department’s Office of the Inspector General and leaders of the Senate and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
“The materials lay out in precise detail not just the extent of Rick Jacob’s misconduct, but also the repeated opportunities Eric Garcetti had to intervene and the specific instances in which he lied under oath about what he knew,” John Tye, Whistleblower Aid founder and chief disclosure officer, said in a statement.
Seligman was among four people who worked for Garcetti who allege that he was aware of the complaints against Jacobs. Seligman testified in a deposition that Jacobs “came into my office, and in front of my staff, he grabbed me and he
held me, and then he kissed me on the lips in front of my staff for a long time.” She said that she immediately notified Ana Guerrero, Garcetti’s chief of staff, but was told that the mayor “would never fire or do anything about Jacobs.” Guerrero has denied receiving Seligman’s complaint.
Garcetti’s office issued a statement in response to Seligman’s complaint.
“There is nothing new here – and these false claims about the Mayor are just as ridiculous now as they were when they were first made. The Mayor stands by his testimony unequivocally, and more than a dozen witnesses have testified under oath that he was never made aware of any improper behavior.”
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