Hudson Valley Official Accused of Decades of Abuse Towards Women
A high ranking Hudson Valley official is accused of preying on young women, abusing women for over a decade and pursuing a relationship with a minor.
Early Wednesday morning, Dutchess County Legislator Joel Tyner resigned. He shared his resignation email on Facebook:
Chairman Pulver/colleagues-- I hereby resign my position as county legislator for Clinton and Rhinebeck-- it's been my pleasure to work with you all over these last 15 years... ...but it's time for me to step aside, let someone else
have this position-- and time for me to work on myself.
Shortly after his Facebook post, the Dutchess County Democrat who represented District 11provided a little more information in the comment section of his post.
"I’ve made far too many stupid mistakes and fifteen years is long enough— time for me to step aside and let someone else serve," Tyner wrote.
It's still unclear what Tyner meant with "stupid mistakes," but shortly after his resignation Hudson Valley Post learned of sexual harassment allegations made by the Facebook group Hudson Valley Feminist Collect against Tyner.
"I can confirm that members of the group have come forth with allegations of sexual harassment by Joel Tyner," the group's administrator Ashely Casale told Hudson Valley Post in an email.
Late Tuesday, Hudson Valley Feminist Collective released a joint statement going into more details about the sexual abuse allegations. The statement was sent to Hudson Valley Post in an email and reads:
Joel Tyner abused his power as Dutchess County Legislator by making repeated sexual advances toward women who reached out to him as activists and constituents. He also used his position as a well-known activist and organizer in the region to prey upon within the progressive movement as well as his role as a public figure prior to that to pursue a relationship with at least one minor. This is a decades-long pattern of abuse and exploitation of his position of authority and influence documented by many women. We have screenshots of many of these interactions and we are in the process of gathering them together at this time.
Hudson Valley Post reached out to Tyner about the allegations, but have yet to hear back. However, Tyner did share a link on his Facebook which he says are the "facts" about the allegations.
Fact : I deeply regret that I have caused real pain & damage to other human beings.Fact : I never knowingly abused my power or exploited my authority with women.Fact : I NEVER tried to pursue a relationship with a minor-- as I have been accused.Fact : I'm far from perfect-- but I have never knowingly "sexually harassed" anyone.Fact : 9 years ago I was engaged to be married to someone 20 years younger than I.Fact : For the last two years I've been married to someone 12 years younger than I.Fact : Tons of vicious lies have been spread about me over last several days-- truth.
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