New York Gov. David Paterson has suspended a top aide, David Johnson, after the New York Times published an account of a woman’s complaints that the New York State Police were pressuring her to drop an assault charge against the aide. Paterson called the woman herself before she failed to appear at a court hearing in the case.
The state police confirmed that the woman was visited by a member of the governor's personal security detail. The Times says that just before she was due to return to court Feb. 8 to seek a final protective order against the governor’s aide, the woman got a phone call from Paterson. She failed to appear at the hearing, and the case was dismissed. The Times says the evidence so far shows “a brutal encounter, a frightened woman and an effort to make a potential political embarrassment go away.”