A university professor has made himself public for the first time to accuse the selection of the Supreme Court of President Donald Trump of sexually assaulting her in the 1980s, prompting calls from the opposition to postpone the nomination vote.
Christine Blasey Ford, a professor at Palo Alto University, initially detailed the allegations about Brett Kavanaugh in confidential letters to his congressman and later to California Senator Diane Feinstein, a senior Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.
Ford told the Washington Post in an interview published on Sunday that he had decided to come because he felt his "civic responsibility" was "overcoming my anguish and terror of reprisals" after the basic guidelines of the story surfaced in the US media this week. pass.
Kavanaugh had previously issued a statement on Friday denying the incident, saying: "I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation, I did not do this in high school or at any other time."
Ford, who is a registered Democrat, told the Post that one summer in the early 1980s, Kavanaugh and a friend, both were "staggering drunk," cornering her in a room at a teen party in a house in the county of Montgomery, a suburb of Washington.
Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed while her friend watched her, said, and then fumbled as she tried to take off her one-piece swimsuit and clothes on top.
When she tried to scream for help, Kavanaugh put her hand over her mouth.
"I thought he could kill me inadvertently," said Ford, now 51 and living in northern California. "He was trying to attack me and take my clothes off."
He said he finally escaped when another of Kavanaugh's classmates at his prestigious private school, Mark Judge, jumped on top of them, and the three of them fell and he was able to escape from the room, first locking himself in a bathroom briefly. before fleeing the house.
She added that she had not told anyone about the attack until 2012, when she mentioned it during a couples counseling therapy with her husband.
The therapist's notes of the time, seen by the Post, do not mention Kavanaugh by name, but echo the claim, describing an attack by students "from an elitist school of men" who became "highly respected members and of high rank ". of society in Washington. "
The notes of a subsequent therapy session a year later describe the attack as an "attempted rape".
Reacting to the story on Sunday, Senator Feinstein said: "From the beginning, I believed that these accusations were extremely serious and depended to a large extent on the character of Judge Kavanaugh."
"I support Mrs. Ford's decision to share her story, and now that she's done it, it's up to the FBI to conduct an investigation," he said.
"This should happen before the Senate advances on this candidate."