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Accuser wants investigation to go forward

A former member of Denver Mayor Michael Hancock’s security detail who has accused him of sexual harassment is saying that she wants an investigation into the matter to go forward.

Police Detective Leslie Branch-Wise, in a Denver7 story Sunday, also accuses the City Council of sweeping the matter that occurred 6 years ago under the rug. The council last week released a joint statement saying that an inquiry into the scandal involving sexually suggestive text messages would not go forward, in part because such an effort “risks re-victimizing” Branch Wise.

“I do want an investigation, and I’ll be more than happy to cooperate with an investigation,” Branch-Wise said in a Denver7 interview.

Leslie Branch-Wise

Denver7

Detective Leslie Branch-Wise of the Denver Police Department during an interview with Denver7 in January 2018.

Hancock has apologized for sending the messages to Branch-Wise, who in 2013 received a $75,000 settlement related to sexual harassment allegations against one of Hancock’s aides, Wayne McDonald. In turn, McDonald denied he acted inappropriately and sued Hancock, his press secretary and Branch-Wise, alleging defamation and breach of contract, among other claims.

In 2016, the city agreed to pay McDonald $200,000 to settle his lawsuit.

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