Sen. Haugen’s husband sued by her former aide

  • By Jerry Cornfield Herald Writer
  • Friday, December 4, 2009 12:01am
  • Local News

OLYMPIA — A woman who managed state Sen. Mary Margaret Haugen’s 2008 campaign claims in a lawsuit to have been groped by the Democratic senator’s husband weeks after the election.

The 29-year-old woman claims Basil Badley fondled her breasts and “put his hand down her shirt and between her legs,” according to the suit filed Nov. 20 in Island County Superior Court.

The incident allegedly occurred in the senator’s Camano Island home while the lawmaker was in Olympia. It came less than two weeks after Badley reportedly tried to kiss the woman at an appreciation party for campaign workers hosted by the couple.

Although the lawsuit identifies the woman only by the initials “C.J.”, it describes her work history, including running Haugen’s recent reelection campaign.

In 2008, Courtney Jones of Coupeville worked as Haugen’s campaign manager. She now is legislative assistant for state Sen. Jean Berkey, D-Everett.

The lawsuit alleges Badley engaged in sexual harassment and sexual assault and battery. It seeks unspecified damages for emotional distress, past and future medical treatment and “impaired” earning capacity.

Reached by phone, Badley declined comment. So did Haugen, who was in Olympia Thursday.

On Thursday, Jones, who was at work in Olympia, also declined to discuss the case.

She would not confirm or deny she is “C.J.” She directed questions about the suit to her lawyer, Seattle attorney Rebecca Roe of Schroeter Goldmark & Bender. Roe filed the lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit, the woman worked as a policy intern for Haugen in 2005, then spent the next two years on the staff of the Senate Transportation Committee on which Haugen serves as chairwoman.

In 2008, Jones signed on for the campaign though Badley, a once-influential lobbyist in Olympia, who made clear he would direct the strategy.

During the campaign, Jones lived in the couple’s home and came to view Badley as a “grandfatherly figure,” according to the suit.

Following the Nov. 23, 2008, dinner for campaign workers Badley attempted to kiss her on the lips but she turned and received it on her cheek.

On Dec. 2, Badley invited her to the house to pick up the materials and have dinner.

The lawsuit claims Badley had several drinks and again tried to kiss her. She “rebuffed his actions by suggesting they eat dinner,” the suit says. Badley continued trying to kiss her then fondled and groped her.

Stunned, embarrassed and upset, she left the home, the suit said.

Badley allegedly sent her an apologetic e-mail the next day.

“He insisted he was ‘not a dirty old man’ unless he was drinking and insisted he wanted to be ‘her friend not her lover,’ ” the lawsuit states.

The woman accepted the apology but later became “increasingly upset” and grew concerned about her career if Haugen found out what happened.

“She was and remains concerned about her career in Washington (state) given the influence and power of the defendant (Badley) and Senator Haugen,” the lawsuit claims.

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@heraldnet.com.

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