Governor Andrew Cuomo has ordered an investigation into how the Manhattan District Attorney’s office handled sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman will look into allegations made by Italian model Ambra Battilana in 2015 and how prosecutors responded. Cuomo said Schneiderman will report back to him and he will then decide if any further actions are necessary.
"It is of great concern that sexual assault cases have not been pursued with full vigor by our criminal justice system,” Cuomo said in a statement.
The governor is taking action after TIME’s UP called on the governor to open an investigation of Manhattan D.A. Cy Vance and his office to determine why Weinstein wasn’t prosecuted.
“The Manhattan DA and the NYPD share the common mission of presenting the strongest evidence at trial and enhancing all cases after arrests are made in sex-crime and all other cases, while at the same time treating all sex-crime victims with the highest degree of respect and sensitivity. Those two goals do not conflict with each other,” D.A. Vance and Police Commissioner James O’Neill said in a joint statement.
The Manhattan D.A.’s office is currently investigating a separate case involving Weinstein. Cuomo said he expects that to be completed within 45 days and the Attorney General’s investigation will not interfere with the D.A.’s work.
"The recent revelations about sexual assault and harassment pervasive in our society are most disturbing. We are leading the way forward with the nation's most comprehensive reform package. This behavior must end,” Cuomo said.
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