SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – A powerful New Mexico senator investigated for sexual harassment will not face any discipline. Democratic Senator Daniel Ivey-Soto tells KRQE the investigation is closed, he respects the process, and he’s ready to move on.
Lobbyist Marianna Anaya accused Senator Ivey-Soto of sexually harassing her. She filed a formal complaint this year sparking an investigation by a private attorney, accusing Ivey-Soto of groping her in 2015. Then this year at a business dinner – she says he asked what she was wearing as she shared a story about a home renovation project and later screamed at her in the hallway of the state capitol.
Friday in an interview, Ivey-Soto said, “My attorney got a letter from the Legislative Council indicating that the committee having failed to find probable cause, that the matter was going to be postponed indefinitely, no further action would be taken on the case.”
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Without specifically addressing the allegations Senator Ivey-Soto says he’s focused on moving forward. The findings of his investigation went to a legislative subcommittee that decided not to move the case forward. Ivey-Soto said, “There are procedures put in place to protect not only the public but also the institution, as well as individual legislators. People need to respect that process as I’ve respected that process all the way through.”
However – KRQE obtained the private attorney’s report showing the investigator found probable cause for sexual harassment in at least two of Anaya’s complaints. It also lists accusations from senator Katy Duhigg saying Ivey-Soto pinned her on a couch in 2019. The report says Senator Mimi Stewart claims Ivey-Soto created a hostile work environment.
The senator claims there were factual errors in that confidential report and the committee received additional information. He explains, “When I read that report, my comment was, if all I saw was that report, I would find probable cause. But the fact is, the committee had more information before them than just that report.”
Despite calls for his resignation the senator says he’s not going anywhere. “I’m committed to working fairly with anybody else who wants to better the state of New Mexico, whether they’ve previously spoken out against me, whether they’ve previously spoken out for me, I will be fair, regardless.”
Ivey-Soto is blaming fellow Democratic Senator Mimi Stewart for the leaked report, saying he called the FBI Thursday to report extortion. KRQE reached out to Senator Stewart to ask about that but did not hear back.
Ivey-Soto’s accuser filed a lawsuit Thursday saying the confidentiality rules in this case restrict her right to free speech since she’s not allowed to discuss the case publicly.
The results of the investigation have not been made public by the Legislature.