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Jul 11, 2022, 7:25:02 AMJul 11
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock’s brewing sexual harassment scandal
drew expressions of disappointment from several City Council members
Wednesday and raised questions about both his re-election bid next
year and any longer-term political aspirations.
So far, no city official has called for the resignation of Hancock
as he navigates the fallout. On Tuesday, he publicly apologized
after revelations that, in early 2012, during his first year in
office, he sent several sexually suggestive text messages to a
member of his security detail, Detective Leslie Branch-Wise.
But even as some council members ducked requests for comment, others
made clear that the text message exchanges — revealed Tuesday night
by Branch-Wise in an interview with Denver7 — unnerved them and
prompted more questions.
Branch-Wise left the mayor’s security detail in 2012 after alleging
a mayoral aide harassed her; that aide was fired. She said she did
not complain at the time about Hancock’s text messages but decided
to speak up now after Denver7 investigated a recent anonymous tip.
She told the station that the mayor’s texts “made me physically
sick” and were frightening, since she felt she couldn’t complain.