An attorney for Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore pushed back Wednesday against a woman accusing the former judge of sexual assault when she was 16.
Beverly Young Nelson appeared in a press conference Monday with famed liberal attorney Gloria Allred. She claimed that in 1977 Moore groped her in the parking lot of a restaurant where she worked. Moore, 70, would have been 30 at the time of the alleged assault.
Moore’s attorney, Phillip Jauregui, pointed to two things that he said people “ought to know.”
“During the press conference Ms. Nelson and Gloria Allred had on Monday, they both said that Ms. Nelson after the allegations had never seen nor had any contact with Judge Moore. As it turns out, in 1999, Ms. Nelson filed a divorce action against her then-husband Mr. Harris,” Jauregui told reporters in Alabama.
“Guess who that case was before? It was filed in Etowah County and the judge assigned was Roy Moore, circuit judge of Etowah County.”
Jauregui also focused on this court case to disprove the idea that Moore signed Nelson’s yearbook, which Nelson claimed happened.
“To a sweeter more beautiful girl I could not say ‘Merry Christmas.’ Christmas 1977. Love Roy Moore DA, 12-22-27 Olde Hickory House,” the yearbook signature presented by Nelson at the press conference said.
Moore’s attorney told reporters that the campaign has a handwriting expert that wants to look at the yearbook, but that he must do it in person. He said that they intend to send a letter to Allred to demand that they send the yearbook to a neutral party.
Jauregui added that he doesn’t want to “not going to make any allegations,” but that people should look at the two “77s” signed in the yearbook. This seems within the lines of a claim pushed by right-wing site Gateway Pundit, which cited a Twitter user as a handwriting expert saying that the “77s” in the signature are different.
Moore’s attorney also noted that Moore told him he never signed “D.A.” after his signature as he was never a district attorney. He instead was an assistant district attorney. However, Jauregui did say that “D.A.” appears after Moore’s name in a filing in Nelson’s divorce case.
This was due to Moore’s assistant, whose initials were “D.A.,” stamping D.A. after Moore’s name in documents.
Nelson is just one of several women accusing Moore of pursuing them when they were minors. She is the only one to have alleged sexual assault.
After Wednesday’s press conference, Tina Johnson told AL.com that Moore pinched her buttocks when she was 28 in 1991.
Several Republican leaders including Mitch McConnell and National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) chairman Cory Gardner have called for Moore to step aside. A poll conducted by the NRSC over the weekend showed Moore down by 12 percentage points against Democrat Doug Jones.
Alabama is a heavily Republican state and hasn’t elected Democrat to the Senate since 1992.