Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh has been subjected to three last-minute accusations of sexual misconduct immediately prior to his confirmation vote. Of these, by far the most salacious and extreme accusation has been made by a woman named Julie Swetnick, who has accused Kavanaugh of being a gang rapist.
New reporting by The Oregonian has revealed that Swetnick has a history of making sexual harassment claims that were later proven to be false after an investigation.
Given the extreme nature of her claims, the lack of any corroborating witnesses, and the fact that she’s represented by noted publicity hound and porn lawyer Michael Avenatti, this shouldn’t come as a surprise.
A Tangled Story
In the early 2000’s Swetnick was hired by a Portland-based company called Webtrends. Her job title at the time of hiring was “professional services engineer.”
Webtrends filed suit against Swetnick in late 2000, lodging several serious allegations. According to The Oregonian:
Webtrends alleged Swetnick claimed to have graduated from Johns Hopkins University but the company said it subsequently learned the school had no record of her attendance. Webtrends said she also “falsely described her work experience” at a prior employer.
The suit also alleges Swetnick “engaged in unwelcome, sexually offensive conduct” while at Webtrends and “made false and retaliatory allegations that other co-workers had engaged in inappropriate conduct toward her.”
In perhaps the most relevant section of the suit, the paper reports:
The suit alleges Swetnick “engaged in unwelcome sexual innuendo and inappropriate conduct” directed at two male employees during a business lunch, with Webtrends customers present. Swetnick claimed two other employees had sexually harassed her, according to the suit.
Yet after the company launched an investigation, Swetnick’s claims were found to be false.
The Oregonian noted:
Webtrends’ suit said it determined Swetnick had engaged in misconduct but could not find evidence to support her allegations against her colleagues. Later, the company alleged, Swetnick took medical leave and simultaneously claimed unemployment benefits in the District of Columbia.
Inconclusive but telling
The suit against Swetnick was eventually dropped by Webtrends, although no record of why it was dropped is available. Swetnick’s lawyer Michael Avenatti has insisted that the suit was dropped because it was baseless, but has offered few details.
The Webtrends suit against Swetnick is not the only legal action in which she has been involved.
The Washington Times reports:
Court records reviewed by The Associated Press show Swetnick has been involved in at least six legal cases over the past 25 years. Along with the lawsuit filed by a former employer in November 2000, the cases include a personal injury suit she filed in 1994 against the Washington, D.C., regional transit authority.
Of course, Swetnick’s somewhat checkered history doesn’t automatically disprove her claims, but it should be considered, especially since she’s offered only her credibility as proof.
Absent corroborating witnesses or evidence, we only have her word for it – and her past history and reputation are a critical part of evaluating what credibility her words should hold.
Swetnick, and her lawyer Avenatti, are looking less credible by the day.