Justin Fairfax’s accuser will discuss sexual assault claims with Massachusetts District Attorney

Justin Fairfax’s accuser will discuss sexual assault claims with Massachusetts District Attorney
Posted at 10:27 AM, Feb 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-13 20:36:23-05

RICHMOND, Va. - Justin Fairfax's accuser, Dr. Vanessa Tyson, will meet with Suffolk County Massachusetts District Attorney to discuss her allegations of sexual assault, according to a recent statement.

Earlier Wednesday, Suffolk County Massachusetts District Attorney Rachael Rollins sent a letter to the law firm representing one of Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax's accusers indicating her office is willing to investigate, according to an office spokesman.

In a statement released by CNN correspondent Ryan Nobles, it was confirmed that Tyson will meet with District Attorney Rachael Rollins to discuss her allegations after receiving a "shocking threat" from Lt. Gov. Fairfax's spokeswoman.

The full statement reads:

"I spoke with Suffolk County District Attorney Rachel Rollins this afternoon. Dr Tyson will meet with members of the Suffolk Country District Attorney's staff and law enforcement to detail her allegations of sexual assault. We are working to schedule a meeting.

Earlier Today, Lt. Governor Fairfax's spokeswoman issued a shocking threat, as reported by The Boston Globe, that Lt. Governor Fairfax would initiate criminal charges against Dr. Tyson is she presses charges against him for sexually assaulting her in 2004. This is a clear effort to obstruct justice. Dr. Tyson will not be bullied and she will not be silenced by such threats.

As Dr. Tyson stated earlier, she will cooperate with all appropriate investigations, and awaits further word from leadership in the Virginia legislature about how it will proceed."

In response, Fairfax's team issued the following statement:

"We understand that Dr. Tyson will meet with members of the Suffolk County District Attorney staff. 

As we stated earlier, the Lt. Governor looks forward to any investigation by the Suffolk County District Attorney.

We have said all along we are open to a full, fair and impartial and non-political investigation of this matter that affords due process to all. We look forward to meeting the Suffolk County District Attorney should they decide to commence an investigation and will cooperate fully.

We know that when all accounts are heard that the truth will prevail and his name will be cleared.”

Dr. Vanessa Tyson alleges she was sexually assaulted by Fairfax in 2004 in Boston during the Democratic National Convention. Fairfax has denied the allegation and the allegation of another woman, who says she was raped by Fairfax in 2000 at Duke University.

Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax and Dr. Vanessa Tyson

To read more on the sexual assault allegations against Lt. Gov. Fairfax, click here.

Rollins' letter to Tyson offered support and information on services if Tyson wants to talk to law enforcement about the incident.

“These are unique circumstances. We wouldn’t normally discuss a matter like this publicly, but the decision was made to self-identify and I’d be remiss if I didn’t make my office and its resources available to her – and to other survivors who might be following the case and wrestling with whether to come forward to law enforcement," Rollins said in a statement.

The Boston Globe first reported the information of Rollins' letter.

In a statement provided to CNN, Fairfax's spokesperson said Fairfax would "cooperate fully with an investigation," but added "the Lt. Governor will explore all options with regard to filing his own criminal complaint in response to the filing of a false criminal complaint against him."

The statute of limitations expires this summer, but so far Tyson has not indicated that she plans to pursue criminal prosecution. She and the other accuser, Meredith Watson, have said they would speak publicly at impeachment proceedings. Efforts to impeach Fairfax are on pause in the General Assembly.

On Tuesday night, Tyson spoke at a #MeToo event. She didn't directly talk about her past, but did make general comments about sexual assault. "There is a recurring theme of at least, when women come forward, of this deliberate attempt to undermine that person's credibility," she said.