One of the women who derailed GOP candidate Roy Moore’s Senate bid in Alabama after accusing him of touching her sexually when she was underage has sued Moore, alleging defamation.
Leigh Corfman was one of five women who told the Washington Post in November that Moore, then in his thirties, had tried to date them while they were teenagers. Corfman said she was just 14 at the time, which is below the age of consent in Alabama.
Moore denied the claims, and a day after Corfman came forward, he told Fox News personality Sean Hannity that he didn’t know Corfman but wouldn’t “dispute” that he might’ve dated older teenagers. Moore’s subsequent denials grew more vigorous: He called Corfman’s story “malicious” and “politically motivated,” according to the lawsuit, and frequently denounced his accusers as members of a liberal conspiracy to steal the Senate seat from him.
It didn’t save his candidacy. Moore’s Democratic opponent, Doug Jones, won a narrow victory, becoming the first Democrat in more than two decades to be elected senator in Alabama.
Corfman, who says she was forced to take a temporary leave of absence from her job after the news broke, wants Moore to retract his allegedly defamatory statements, apologize, and pay her back for court costs.
“Mr. Moore made these statements knowing that they are false,” the lawsuit alleges. “Alternatively, if Mr. Moore does not remember Ms. Corfman — including perhaps because he pursued other minors and teenagers when he was in his 30s — he made these false statements with reckless disregard of their truth.”
“By this lawsuit, I seek to do what I could not do as a 14-year-old — hold Mr. Moore and those who enable him accountable,” Corfman told AL.com in a statement. Her lawsuit also names his campaign committee as a defendant and calls several comments made by Moore aides defamatory.
Asked about the litigation, a Moore campaign spokesperson told VICE News, “We look forward to transparently discussing these matters in a court of law."