New Accuser Says Donald Trump Groped Her at 1998 US Open | NBC Connecticut
Decision 2016

Decision 2016

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New Accuser Says Donald Trump Groped Her at 1998 US Open

Karena Virginia said Trump touched her breast while she was waiting for a car after attending the US Open tennis tournament in Queens in 1998

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    Karena Virginia said Trump touched her breast while she was waiting for a car after attending the US Open tennis tournament in Queens in 1998. (Published Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016)

    A New York yoga instructor came forward Thursday as Donald Trump's 10th accuser of sexual misconduct and said the Republican presidential nominee groped her in 1998, leaving her feeling "intimidated" and "powerless."

    Karena Virginia said Trump touched her breast while she was waiting for a car after attending the US Open tennis tournament in Queens in 1998.

    Nine women have previously come forward to accuse Trump of sexual misconduct. Trump has denied those allegations.

    A Trump campaign representative also rejected Virginia's account as "fictional" and alleged a "coordinated" attack between her lawyer and the Clinton campaign.

    "Discredited political operative Gloria Allred, in another coordinated, publicity seeking attack with the Clinton campaign, will stop at nothing to smear Mr. Trump," said Jessica Ditto, the campaign's deputy communications director. "Give me a break. Voters are tired of these circus-like antics and reject these fictional stories and the clear efforts to benefit Hillary Clinton." 

    Allred, who is supporting Hillary Clinton for president, said earlier Thursday that she had not been in touch with Clinton's campaign about Virginia.

    Virginia said she never met Trump before the incident occurred. She said she was waiting for her car when she saw Trump talking to other men and overheard Trump tell the men: “'Hey look at this one. We haven’t seen her before. Look at those legs.' As though I was an object, rather than a person.”

    She said Trump approached her, grabbed her by the arm and touched her right breast. 

    "I was in shock, I flinched," Virginia said. "'Don’t you know who I am?' That's what he said to me."

    Virginia said she told her husband and others about the incident, which she said made her feel "intimidated" and "powerless."

    She said Trump's actions made her ashamed that she wore a short dress and high heels and that for years afterward she struggled with what to wear so as not to attract unwanted attention from men. 

    Virginia said she saw Trump about five years ago in a business setting with other people present and that he "looked her up and down" several times at that event. 

    "I had come to the realization that I was the victim," she said. He had violated me when he groped me years earlier."

    Trump has said that he's never met some of his accusers and claimed that Hillary Clinton campaign was involved in fabricating allegations against him. 

    Virginia said no one has asked her to come forward and that many people advised her not to speak publicly fearing Trump would attack her for speaking out. 

    "Perhaps you do not remember me or what you did to me so many years ago but I can assure you I remember you and what you did to me as though it was yesterday," Virginia said. "Your random moment of sexual pleasure came at my expense and affected me greatly."

    Allred, Virginia's lawyer, said she was not considering a lawsuit against Trump. Allred said the celebrity businessman's statement at the debate Wednesday night that "nobody has more respect for women than I do" is "ludicrous."

    Allred held a press conference with another one of Trump's accusers last week, who said he forcibly kissed her and thrusted his genitals at her. Summer Zervos, a former contestant on "The Apprentice" reality show, alleged Trump made the inappropriate sexual contact at a Beverly Hills hotel in 2007.

    "Today’s victim is also noteworthy in that her allegations demonstrate how Mr. Trump selects his victims at random,” Allred said Thursday.