Tara Reade: What are the sex attack allegations against Joe Biden?

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Joe Biden’s campaign has denied the new allegations against him

A woman who previously worked for former Vice-President Joe Biden has claimed the 2020 presidential candidate sexually assaulted her nearly 30 years ago in the halls of Congress.

Mr Biden has been accused of inappropriate touching by multiple women, but this was the first accusation of serious sexual assault to emerge against the Democratic politician.

Mr Biden’s camp has denied the allegation made by Tara Reade, who worked for him when he was a senator, but now acquaintances have corroborated Ms Reade’s account.

With accusations flying during a presidential election year – the first since the emergence of the #MeToo movement – let’s take a look at what exactly Mr Biden is accused of and how he has responded.

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Then-Senator Biden at the 1991 confirmation hearing for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas

What is the accusation?

Tara Reade, 56, worked as a staff assistant to Mr Biden from 1992 to 1993 when he was a senator for the US state of Delaware.

In recent interviews, she has said that in 1993 her former boss forced her against a wall and put his hands under her shirt and skirt after she delivered him his gym bag.

“There was no exchange, really, he just had me up against the wall,” she said to podcast host Katie Halper in March 2020.

“I remember it happened all at once… his hands were on me and underneath my clothes.” He then penetrated her with his fingers, she said.

“I remember him saying, first, as he was doing it ‘Do you want to go somewhere else?’ and then him saying to me, when I pulled away… he said ‘Come on man, I heard you liked me,’” she said.

“That phrase stayed with me.”

Ms Reade filed a criminal complaint on 9 April 2020 with police, saying she was a victim of sexual assault but did not name Mr Biden.

She said in a tweet that she filed the complaint “for safety reasons only”, as the statute of limitations for her claim have expired and she had begun to receive online threats.

What evidence has emerged?

Ms Reade was one of several women who have come forward to accuse Mr Biden of inappropriate touching, hugging or kissing, though none described his actions as sexual assault at the time.

Three people have now backed her account of being assaulted, although none say they were witnesses to it. Her brother, former neighbour and former colleague have said that they heard her describe the accusation against her boss shortly after the alleged incident.

Lynda LaCasse, who lived next door to Ms Reade after she left Washington in 1993, told Business Insider: “This happened, and I know it did because I remember talking about it.”

She recalled Ms Reade crying while describing her experience as they both shared stories of violence in their lives sometime in 1995 or 1996.

“I remember her saying, here was this person that she was working for and she idolised him,” Ms LaCasse said.

“I remember the skirt. I remember the fingers,” she said. “I remember she was devastated.”

“I have to support her just because that’s what happened,” Ms LaCasse said she felt compelled to support Ms Reade because “we need to stand up and tell the truth.” However, she still plans to vote for Mr Biden in the November presidential election.

Lorraine Sanchez, a former legislative aide who worked with Ms Reade in the office of a California lawmaker from 1994 to 1996 told Business Inside

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