INDIANAPOLIS -- A crowd of approximately 75 people rallied at the Indiana Statehouse Saturday afternoon to call for Attorney General Curtis Hill to resign over allegations of sexual harassment levied by four women.
Carrying signs reading “Time’s up” and “Power does not equal permission,” the protesters – organized by the Indiana Coalition for Crime Victims Rights, the Indiana Coalition to End Sexual Assault and the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence – said they believe the women who have accused Hill.
“Believing victims is one of the most fundamental ways we offer the support they need to heal from the trauma of violence,” Kerry Hyatt Bennett, legal counsel for the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence (ICADV) said. “ICADV also believes in speaking truth to power. Attorney General Curtis Hill holds a powerful position in the state of Indiana, but he is not above the law or above the policies put in place by the state government. He holds the responsibility to resign from his office and be held accountable for his actions."
Earlier this week, the contents of a classified memo documenting allegations of inappropriate touching by Hill at a March 15 party celebrating the end of the legislative session were made public by the Indianapolis Star.
Two of the women, State Rep. Mara Candelaria Reardon (D-Munster) and Indiana Senate Democrats Communication Director Gabrielle McLemore, have since come forward publicly. In an op-ed for the Times of Northwest Indiana, Reardon said Hill grabbed her buttocks, and later put his hand on her back, saying, “That skin. That back.”
Republicans at the highest levels of Indiana politics, including Governor Eric Holcomb and U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks, have all called for Hill to step down over the allegations.
Hill has denied any inappropriate actions, and responded on Friday to calls for him to step down by declaring that he wouldn’t resign and demanding an investigation by the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office into the allegations against him.
“The allegations against me are vicious and false,” Hill said in a statement Friday. “At no time did I ever grab or touch anyone inappropriately. The lack of fairness and the failure to recognize my constitutional rights are a complete travesty.”
Organizers urged rally attendees to call the attorney general’s office beginning Monday to let him know that they want him to resign.
Indiana law allows for an elected official to be removed from office if they are convicted of a crime (Hill hasn't even been charged with a crime) or via impeachment – however, the state constitution’s impeachment provision has never been used since it was signed into law in 1851.
Indiana Inspector General Lori Torres has said her office will investigate the sexual harassment allegations against Hill at the request of both Republican and Democrat leadership. No timetable has been given for that investigation.