New York Attorney General and second most powerful Jewish politician in the state, Eric Schneiderman, on Monday announced he was planning to resign from office on Tuesday, following allegations published in The New Yorker (Four Women Accuse New York’s Attorney General of Physical Abuse) that he was physically abusive with four women he was dating. Schneiderman did deny the allegations “strongly.” Two women, Michelle Manning Barish and Tanya Selvaratnam, went on the record, telling the New Yorker that Schneiderman repeatedly beat them in the course of their relationships with him.
The two women alleged that Schneiderman would hit them after drinking, and categorized the abuse they suffered as “assault.” They did not report to the police at the time, but received medical attention “after having been slapped hard across the ear and face, and also choked.”
Both women said Schneiderman threatened to kill them if they broke up with him.
A third woman alleged that Schneiderman also repeatedly subjected her to physical violence, and she was too frightened of him to complain. A fourth woman, described as “an attorney who has held prominent positions in the New York legal community,” said Schneiderman responded to her rejecting his advances by slapping her across the face “with such force that it left a mark that lingered the next day.” She screamed in surprise and pain, and began to cry, but was too frightened to complain.
Back in February, Schneiderman announced filing a civil-rights suit against producer Harvey Weinstein, saying, “We have never seen anything as despicable as what we’ve seen right here.” In May, Governor Andrew Cuomo asked Schneiderman to investigate Manhattan District Attorney, Cyrus Vance, Jr., and the New York City Police Department, for failing to pursue women’s complaints against Weinstein, for lack of sufficient evidence.
The attorney general released the following statement on Monday: “It’s been my great honor and privilege to serve as Attorney General for the people of the State of New York. In the last several hours, serious allegations, which I strongly contest, have been made against me. While these allegations are unrelated to my professional conduct or the operations of the office, they will effectively prevent me from leading the office’s work at this critical time. I therefore resign my office, effective at the close of business on May 8, 2018.”