The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden, is facing sexual assault allegations after a former aide came forward to share her story.
Tara Reade, who served as an aide to Biden while he was a senator, filed a complaint with Washington, D.C.’s, police department on Thursday, over an alleged sexual assault that occurred in 1993.
Reade said that at the time the incident with Biden occurred, she filed a harassment complaint with a Senate personnel office. However, she said she did not say she was assaulted.
Reade first made the allegations during an interview on a podcast in March 2020.
During the interview, Reade said the alleged assault occurred in 1993 when she was asked to bring a gym bag to Biden, “We were alone, and it was the strangest thing. There was no like exchange really. He just had me up against the wall.”
Listen to the interview below:
“He just had me up against the wall, and the wall was cold, and it happened all at once. … And then his hands were on me and underneath my clothes. He went down my skirt but then up inside it. And he penetrated me with his fingers.”
Reade continued to say Biden was kissing her throughout the incident. She said when she tried to pull away, Biden said, “Come on, man, I heard you liked me.”
“It’s like he implied like that I had done this,” she said. “For me, it was like everything shattered in that moment. Because I knew we were alone it was over. He wasn’t trying to do anything more.”
“But, I looked up to him. He was like my father’s age. He was this champion of women’s rights in my eyes,” she added.
Shortly after he announced his presidential campaign last year, Biden was plagued with complaints that he inappropriately touched women. One of the women who came forward was Reade, but she did not allege that she was assaulted at the time.
Biden responded to those allegations last year and he said that “social norms are changing.”
He also said that “the boundaries of protecting personal space have been reset” and he vowed to be “much more mindful” in the future.
NBC News reports that three out of the five people Reade said she told about the incident said they did not remember having such a conversation with her.
A fourth person said they did recall Reade telling them about the alleged assault. And the fifth person said they only recalled Reade saying she was inappropriately touched by Biden.
Biden’s campaign denied her allegations in a statement to NBC News, “He firmly believes that women have a right to be heard — and heard respectfully.”
The statement continued, “Such claims should also be diligently reviewed by an independent press. What is clear about this claim: it is untrue.”