Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear says there is 'no place in Frankfort' for Rep. Dan Johnson
Beshear calls the accusation of sexual abuse against Johnson "horrific."
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear said there is no place in Frankfort for Republican state Rep. Dan Johnson.
Johnson is accused of sexually molesting a then 17-year-old girl in 2012, prior to his election to the state House.
“The allegations against Dan Johnson are horrific, and my belief is Dan Johnson was never qualified to be in office in the first place,” Beshear told WDRB News.
Beshear said Johnson should resign, and also pointed to racially-charged images WDRB found on Johnson's Facebook page during his run for office last year. Some of images depicted former President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama as monkeys. They have since been taken down.
“The type of hate speech that he espoused, especially along with new allegations means there's no place in Frankfort or anywhere else for Dan Johnson,” said Beshear.
Johnson, who is also pastor of Heart of Fire church in Fern Creek, took to his pulpit on Tuesday to deny the assault, saying he will not quit.
“This allegation concerning this lady, this young girl, absolutely has no merit,” said Johnson.
LMPD originally did not file charges in the case, but has now reopened its investigation. Beshear said he will be watching closely.
“Certainly if there are allegations that he has used his public office in ways that would violate the law, that would directly bring our office in. But a law enforcement agency needs to be looking at these allegations,” he said.
Beshear said he's also prepared to jump into another controversial case, the sexual harassment settlement involving former House Speaker Jeff Hoover and three other lawmakers.
Right now, the Legislative Ethics Commission is investigating.
“If they find facts that would suggest criminal activity, they then refer it to us. So, provided they find those, we will be in communication,” said Beshear.
The Attorney General said he will also go to court over pension reform, if he believes the final bill breaks the promises made by law to public employees.
“If a bill is passed that violates the inviolable contract, then yes, we will be involved in litigation,” said Beshear. “It's nothing less than our teachers, and our law enforcement, and our social workers deserve. And it's my job as Attorney General.”
Beshear, who is a Democrat, is considering a run for governor, but will not reveal a timetable for his decision.
Meanwhile, Beshear said he will continue to work on issues such as opioid abuse, which he called the state’s biggest single threat; human trafficking; and scams against the elderly.
Beshear also said he hopes to have a better relationship with Republican Gov. Matt Bevin. But, he added, “It takes two to make a relationship work.”
Copyright 2017 WDRB Media. All rights reserved.