A former point out law firm promises he was fired for cooperating with the sexual harassment probe that forced ex-Gov. Andrew Cuomo from business — and also blames his ouster on “reverse sex discrimination” right after he joked about the matter with a female colleague.
In a retaliation and discrimination suit in opposition to the state, Craig Herskowitz — who labored as an assistant counsel in the governor’s Manhattan office — suggests he “corroborated some of the allegations” against Cuomo in the course of an April 1, 2021, job interview with the condition Legal professional General’s Workplace.
Through the sit-down, Herskowitz, 40, claims he was represented by previous New Jersey US Lawyer Paul Fishman, who was hired to depict Cuomo’s staffers amid the attorney general’s probe.
Fishman “reported directly” to Cuomo’s acting counsel, Beth Garvey, and he allegedly “informed her of the character of Plaintiff’s testimony” afterward, according to Herskowitz’s Manhattan Supreme Court submitting.
Soon after AG Letitia James introduced her bombshell report versus Cuomo on Aug. 3, accusing him of harassing 11 women of all ages, an unknown woman executive assistant joked to Herskowitz that she “felt left out mainly because the Governor never ever sexually harassed her,” the suit states.
In response, Herskowitz made use of “the identical tone” and instructed the girl that she “should have arrive ahead with the facts due to the fact it would have cleared Gov. Cuomo of the allegations from him,” court papers say.
A few days later on, Garvey called Herskowitz and advised him to report to the Governor’s Office environment of Employee Relations in Albany, wherever he was questioned about having received anti-sexual harassment education, which he did not recall, according to the match.
The GOER official who interviewed Herskowitz allegedly “appeared disinterested in his responses,” which include his assertions concerning “the context of the conversation” with the executive assistant.
On Aug, 12, Garvey called Herskowitz and fired him, declaring the governor’s office environment experienced adopted “a ‘zero-tolerance policy’ towards sexual harassment in light-weight of the allegations against Governor Cuomo and the investigation by the Attorney General,” in accordance to his match.
About two months later on, Herskowitz received a box that contains his belongings from his business, together with two “sticky notes” with messages that appeared to be in the government assistant’s handwriting, court papers say.
A single allegedly claimed, “maybe you can go again to relationship reveals $$” and the other allegedly explained, “You had it coming,” alongside with a smiley facial area.
In an job interview at his Upper East Side apartment, Herskowitz explained to The Article that the “dating shows” reference evidently involved a blind date he went on for a 2017 Tv overall look on the “Steve Harvey Demonstrate.”
He also reported the allegation “that I would sexually harass someone the day of the lawyer general’s report coming out is ludicrous.”
Considering the fact that becoming fired, Herskowitz mentioned, he’s applied for jobs at different state businesses without any luck.
“I believe I’m regarded toxic due to the fact nobody wishes to be associated with an individual accused of sexual harassment,” he claimed.
Soon after six months without having a job, he claimed, he accepted a 20% pay back reduce from his former $152,000-a-calendar year salary to function as a defense lawyer at the Rosenberg Regulation Firm in Brooklyn.
“Only the criminals will seek the services of me now,” he said with a rueful chuckle.
Herskowitz also has a profile posted on the Backstage.com web-site, the place 1 photo shows him donning a match and tie, with what appears to be an official state pin on his lapel.
Though the webpage states he’s available to portray characters amongst 35 and 45 a long time previous, Herskowitz referred to as it “something I did for entertaining — I under no circumstances went on auditions or something.”
Herskowitz’s accommodate seeks unspecified damages for alleged violations of the condition Human Correct Legislation on grounds that he was retaliated in opposition to “for corroborating testimony about allegations of sexual harassment” against Cuomo and mainly because his firing amounted to “reverse sex discrimination” in the way the allegations from him ended up handled.
Gov. Hochul’s office declined to remark and neither Garvey, now a partner at the Greenberg & Traurig legislation business, nor Fishman instantly returned requests for comment.