Conn. Republican arrested for grabbing woman’s genitals — his lawyer says it was ‘a playful gesture’
A local Republican politician in Connecticut was arrested for allegedly pinching a female employee’s genitals, reports the Westport Daily Voice.
Christopher von Keyserling, 71, was arrested Wednesday in Greenwich Town Hall and charged with fourth-degree sexual assault, a misdemeanor. He was released on a $2,500 bond and given a court date of Jan. 25.
Von Keyserling has served on the Greenwich Representative Town Meeting board since 1985.
The incident, which took place in December 2016, began when the 57-year-old woman encountered von Keyserling in the hallway. The two had a brief political argument, in which von Keyserling remarked, “I love this new world, I no longer have to be politically correct.”
When the woman tried to walk away, von Keyserling allegedly reached from behind to place his hand between her legs and pinched her in the groin. He said “it would be your word against mine and nobody will believe you,” the woman claimed.
His lawyer told Greenwich Time the charges were the result of a “jocular” moment with a woman.
“In almost 30 years of practicing law in this town, I would say Mr. von Keyserling is the one person I would never suspect of having any inappropriate sexual predilections,” the lawyer, Phil Russell, said. “There was a playful gesture, in front of witnesses. It was too trivial to be considered anything of significance. To call it a sexual assault is not based in reality.”
Police said surveillance recordings from the day of the incident are consistent with the woman’s claims.