Tacoma chairman of state House committee could be suspended

Rep. David Sawyer, a Democrat, has been accused of inappropriate or harassing behavior.

OLYMPIA — House Democrats plan a special caucus meeting Wednesday to consider suspending the chairman of the Commerce and Gaming Committee who is accused of violating the respective workplace policies of the House.

Several women have accused Rep. David Sawyer, D-Tacoma, of engaging in behavior toward them that ranged from inappropriate to harassing. The accusations involve interactions before and after he took office. Sawyer has denied many of the allegations and said he has acted professionally and legally.

The House hired an independent investigator in March to review his conduct. On Friday, leadership issued a news release stating “the investigator has confirmed evidence supporting some allegations.”

House leadership is recommending Sawyer be suspended as chairman until the investigation is done, possibly by the end of the month. The caucus will decide whether to confirm the recommendation.

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