Ex-top Pentagon official sexually harassed two women over seven years

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A former best Pentagon official sexually harassed two feminine colleagues over seven many years — subjecting them to unwanted focus, such as photographing the buttocks of one female and offering the other massages through “mentoring” periods, in accordance to a report produced on Wednesday.

John James, who was government director of the Missile Defense Agency, retired in February amid an investigation into his conduct, Army.com documented.

The Department of Protection Workplace of Inspector Basic substantiated grievances that James started harassing the women of all ages in 2012, a year after he arrived at the agency, it wrote in a report first acquired by Usa Nowadays.

James, who experienced a 37-calendar year occupation at the DOD, obtained counseling for his ill conduct in 2017 — but the harassment continued into 2019, the inspector standard identified.

For 7 many years, James “repeatedly sought out and produced deliberate, unwelcomed actual physical contact” with the initial female, in accordance to the report.

“Mr. James informed us that his contacts with (the woman) had been aspect of a mentoring relationship,” the report explained. “However, we uncovered no evidence to support his assertion.”

At an agency party in 2014, James snapped a pic of the woman’s guiding on her personalized device as she walked to a foods tent. She deleted it instantly just after looking at it and documented it to her supervisor, even though James denied having the photo.

He also asked for her cellphone quantity, would shake her hand for uncomfortably extensive periods — which one particular witness described as “odd and creepy” — and in 2018, explained to her he experienced been “chasing her for seven decades.”

The second female was “an personnel who Mr. James ‘mentored,’ by massaging her neck powering a shut door in his office on two events even though making an inappropriate remark, ‘I appreciate this,’ ” in accordance to the report.

The girl broke up the romantic relationship but did not report the gross carry out due to the fact she feared retaliation, the IG said. She sooner or later quit, in section more than James’ actions.

James denied he experienced harassed anybody, blaming the problems on a disgruntled personnel handed around for promotion.

“There’s a modicum of real truth in the interactions, but no intent for sexual harassment, or favors, or nearly anything of that mother nature,” he explained to investigators.

The 25-site report, with testimony from 11 witnesses, was completed on July 13 and initially attained by United states These days below the Freedom of Info Act.

Considering the fact that James is retired, the report was added to his personnel file, the IG concluded.