Woman accuses West Virginia state delegate of sexual harassment

FAYETTE COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – As the November general election quickly approaches, there is some drama in the race for a House of Delegates seat in southern West Virginia.

A woman is accusing Del. Austin Haynes, R, from the 32nd district in Fayette County, of sexual harassment through text.

Her attorney, Stephen New, says his client and Haynes exchanged numbers in 2020. New claims they have screenshots of those texts where Haynes allegedly messaged his client late at night, allegedly saying sexually suggestive, inappropriate things.

Those screenshots have been made public but are too graphic for us to air.

“There was mention of quid pro quo in exchange for favorable action on a bill,” New said. “This is just the way things are; this happens all the time in Charleston.”

Haynes has not replied to the accusations despite multiple attempts to contact him.

New said after they send notice of intent to file suit, they will look into whether the Legislature itself, under the state’s insurance policy, might be held responsible for Haynes’ alleged actions.

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