Fairfax leaving law firm after its investigation finds no wrongdoing
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax is officially leaving the northern Virginia law firm where he worked after it announced that its own investigation found “no allegations or evidence of any wrongdoing” during his time with the firm.
Morrison and Forester, with an office located in McLean, issued a statement saying it has concluded its own investigation by outside counsel. The firm reported opening the investigation in February after two women accused Fairfax of sexual assault in the early 2000s in Boston and Durham.
The firm’s statement notes that the law firm’s investigation was limited to only his tenure with the firm, which was from September 2018 until he took a leave of absence in February 2019.
The statement also says Fairfax has now decided to leave the firm.
Although the role of Lt. Governor is a part-time position with the state, Fairfax issued a statement saying, “I have decided that, at the present time, it is best for me to focus my attention on serving the people of Virginia.”
Fairfax’s statement reiterates that he is maintaining his innocence, that he has passed two lie detector tests, and has requested that the District Attorneys in Durham and Boston investigate the allegations.
It goes on to say, “It has been an honor to be affiliated with such a distinguished firm as Morrison & Forester and I wanted to allow them to conclude their investigation before announcing my departure from the firm.”
The Durham County District Attorney’s office did not respond to NBC12′s inquiry about whether it is investigating the allegations. The Suffolk County District Attorneys office responded that it does not “discuss potential sexual assault investigations when criminal charges have not issued.”
Morrison and Forester’s full statement can be read below:
“Following reports that two women in February 2019 alleged sexual assault in 2000 and 2004, the firm initiated an investigation to determine whether there had been misconduct during Justin’s tenure at the firm. Justin joined the firm in September 2018. While outside counsel conducted that investigation Justin voluntarily took a leave of absence. Justin fully cooperated with the investigation. The investigation conducted by the firm found neither allegations nor evidence of any wrongdoing by Justin during his tenure at the firm. With the conclusion of our investigation, Justin’s leave of absence has ended. Justin has informed us, however, that he has decided to leave the firm and we respect that decision.”
Lt. Governor Fairfax’s full statement can be read below:
“When Morrison & Foerster announced several months ago that it intended to perform an investigation following the recent allegations about events from 15 and 19 years ago, I told the firm I would fully cooperate, knowing that any investigation they decided to perform would find I had done nothing wrong. Morrison & Foerster investigated my tenure at the firm and found no hint of any wrongdoing.
"The allegations by Ms. Watson and Dr. Tyson are false and totally inconsistent with how I have lived my entire life. I previously passed two FBI background checks. I have now voluntarily passed two lie detector tests related to the allegations by Ms. Watson and Dr. Tyson. I have repeatedly asked for an investigation by law enforcement because I know that any professional, unbiased investigation will clear my name. It has been an honor to be affiliated with such a distinguished firm as Morrison & Foerster and I wanted to allow them to conclude their investigation before announcing my departure from the firm. But with that process completed, I have decided that, at the present time, it is best for me to focus my attention on serving the people of Virginia.”
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