NEW YORK — Lobbyist Jean Kim spoke exclusively with PIX11’S Katie Corrado in a one-on-one interview about her accusations of sexual misconduct against NYC comptroller and mayoral candidate Scott Stringer.
Kim did unpaid work for Stringer’s 2001 public advocate campaign as a way to break into New York politics and said she thought of Stringer like a trusted mentor.
“He said, ‘I’m going to teach you how to work on a campaign,'” Kim told Corrado. “There was a very internship aspect of working with him, even if it wasn’t a formal arrangement.”
Kim recounted a night at a bar in September 2001 with then-Assemblymember Stringer after a meeting of their political club, Community Free Democrats. Kim alleges Stringer’s behavior turned predatory after other club members went home.
”He actually leaned over and, when he kissed me, I do remember he leaned into the back of my pants,” according to Kim.
She said she was taken aback and didn’t know what to say. Kim said she changed the subject to diffuse the situation without making Stringer angry.
“I remember like, him saying clearly to me, ‘don’t tell anyone about this,’” said Kim.
Just days later, Stringer made her promises of a District Leader position, according to Kim.
“He said, ‘you just have to prove your loyalty to me,’” she recalled. When asked how she interpreted that, Kim responded: “That I would have to sleep with him.”
Kim also described Stringer’s alleged advances that took place during several taxi rides.
“He touched my leg and he tried to spread my legs apart,” recalled Kim. “After like a few encounters of doing that he said, ‘Why won’t you f— me? Why won’t you f— me?’”
Kim believes she isn’t Stringer’s only victim, and said she overheard other club members say “Scott has an intern problem.”
Fearing Stringer’s political power and potential retaliation, she kept quiet. “I know so many people in politics, they are scared of Scott’s vindictive nature,” Kim said.
But now, she says enough is enough. “I can’t take this anymore,” said Kim. “Especially when I know what he did to me, what I believe he did to other interns.”
She maintains that nothing was consensual. When asked point-blank if she ever had any sort of romantic, consensual relationship with Stringer, she said no.
At a press conference Wednesday, Stringer said he had an on-and-off relationship with Kim for several months during his 2001 campaign.
“I believe it was a mutual, consensual relationship,” said Stringer. “I never used force. I never made any threats.”
Stringer also denied ever demanding sex from Kim. “I don’t talk that way,” said Stringer. “That’s not the language I use and I didn’t use that language ever with Jean.”
Kim is calling for Stringer to end his mayoral campaign, and wants a formal investigation into her allegations.
Her message to Stringer: “Stop being such a hypocrite.”
Stringer spoke with the PIX11 Morning News on Thursday, again denying the accusations: