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Politics

In spite of damning report, Durham avoids ouster for sexual harrassment

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capitol.tn.gov
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP/WMOT) — A legislative committee formed to look into allegations of sexual impropriety against Franklin Rep. Jeremy Durham says the Republican lawmaker used his position to sexually harass at least 22 women.

Among other findings, the report says a then-20-year-old college student told investigators Durham plied her with drinks and had sex with her in his office two years ago.

Attorney’s from the state Attorney General’s office conducted the investigation. AG Herbert Slattery delivered the report to the Tennessee House Wednesday and had high praise for the women who agreed to testify.

“These were difficult conversations and took some courage, but for their participation we would not have much of a report for you.”

In spite of the findings, the committee chose not to recommend that a special legislative session be called to oust Durham. They noted that any expulsion would only last until the November election and Durham could not be expelled a second time if reelected in the fall.

Committee Staff Attorney Doug Himes delivered the committee’s final recommendation.

“While the conduct described in this report justifies expulsion, it is ultimately the voters of the 65th representative district who will decide who best represents their principles and values in Nashville. We leave it for them to."

Durham is currently running for re-election. Early voting for state primaries begins Friday.

Would you like to read the complete investigative report?