Advertisement

Lawsuit claims NYC Mayor Adams demanded oral sex from colleague for career help in ’93

NEW YORK — A former police colleague of New York City Mayor Eric Adams claims in a bombshell new lawsuit alleging sexual assault that he exposed himself to her and demanded she perform oral sex on him in exchange for help with a job issue more than three decades ago.

The accuser, Lorna Beach-Mathura, first came forward in November by filing a notice of claim saying she planned to sue Adams for sexual assault. The brief November filing didn’t include specifics about the accusation.

In response to the newly filed lawsuit, Sylvia Hinds-Radix, the city government’s corporation counsel who’s representing Adams in the sexual assault case, said the mayor vehemently denies Beach-Mathura’s accusations.

“While we review the complaint, the mayor fully denies these outrageous allegations and the events described here; we expect full vindication in court,” Hinds-Radix said in a statement.

The suit, filed Monday afternoon in Manhattan Supreme Court, alleges the incident took place in 1993, when Beach-Mathura and Adams both worked for the city Transit Police Department.

In addition to being a transit cop, Adams was at the time a top official for the Guardians Association, a Black police officers’ organization. Beach-Mathura, who was also a Guardians member, alleges Adams picked her up in his car after work in Manhattan and brought her to a vacant lot near the Hudson River after he had agreed to meet with her to talk about helping her get a promotion in the Transit Police Department.

Beach-Mathura said she went to Adams with the employment issue because she found him “inspiring” and thought he could help in his capacity as a Guardians leader. She alleges she first got to know Adams from working with him years earlier.

Initially, Beach-Mathura alleges in the lawsuit Adams was going to pick her up and give her a ride home to Coney Island to talk. Once in the car, she realized instead that he was headed to an area near the Hudson River, which made her “nervous and scared,” the lawsuit says.

Once in the empty lot, Beach-Mathura alleges Adams asked her to explain her employment issue. After she did, “Adams told Plaintiff that he thought he could help her but that he ‘also needed some help’ and began rubbing his penis through his clothes with his hand,” according to the lawsuit.

Adams then told her he wanted oral sex from her in exchange for his help, the court paper says. The lawsuit says “while repeatedly cajoling, demanding, and begging Plaintiff for oral sex, Defendant Adams unzipped his pants” and exposed himself.

Beach-Mathura alleges she “repeatedly and adamantly refused” Adams’ overtures. The suit claims Adams then “assaulted” Beach-Mathura “by grabbing her hand and placing it on his exposed” genitals and told her to masturbate him.

Beach-Mathura alleges she again refused, repeatedly saying, “No,” and trying to pull her hand away. Beach-Mathura “feared that she would be raped” by Adams, but “tried to remain calm,” the lawsuit alleges.

“Plaintiff was frightened not only due to Defendant Adams’ appalling conduct, but also because she knew that he, as a police officer, had at least one loaded gun in the car,” her lawsuit charges.

Beach-Mathura claims that after several more attempts, Adams stopped trying to talk her into a sex act, and instead started masturbating. Court papers say semen from Adams landed on Beach-Mathura’s thigh and stocking.

After the alleged assault, Beach-Mathura claims in the suit that Adams told her he needed to get back to work. He then drove her to the Chambers St. subway station in Manhattan where he dropped her off, according to the suit.

She alleges Adams never helped her with the employment issue. She left city government in 1994 and currently lives in Florida, where she has worked as a public school teacher.

Beach-Mathura claims she told “numerous people” about the alleged assault, including current and former NYPD officials as well as her two daughters, according to the suit.

She said she never formally reported the incident out of fear of retaliation from Adams, the Guardians or the NYPD, all of whom are named as defendants in her lawsuit. In addition to accusing Adams of sexual assault and battery, Beach-Mathura’s suit says the Guardians and the NYPD violated anti-gender violence laws by having “enabled” his alleged behavior.

The NYPD and the Guardians did not immediately return requests for comment on Beach-Mathura’s suit, which is seeking $5 million in damages.

Beach-Mathura also named three unnamed corporate entities as defendants she alleges were responsible for wrongdoing in connection with her complaint. The suit says she will name those entities “upon discovery of their identity during this litigation.”

The shocking lawsuit claims come as Adams faces several legal headaches.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating Adams’ 2021 campaign over allegations that the Turkish government funneled illegal foreign cash into its coffers, a probe that prompted FBI agents to seize the mayor’s cellphones and raid the home of his chief political fundraiser last year. Just last month, FBI agents raided the Bronx homes of Winnie Greco, a top Adams adviser at City Hall, as part of a separate investigation led by federal prosecutors in Brooklyn. Adams has not been accused of wrongdoing in either of those investigations.

The employment issue Beach-Mathura alleges she wanted Adams’ help in resolving involved her attempts to get promoted to become a principal administrative assistant at the Transit Police Department.

Having for years worked as an administrative assistant, a job that included taking incident reports, assigning patrols and other clerical duties, Beach-Mathura alleged she was “passed over” for a bump to principal multiple times despite scoring better on promotional exams than the colleagues who ended up getting the job.

She alleges she believes she was snubbed of a promotion due to the Transit Police Department’s “well-known, discriminatory and retaliatory hostile environment,” especially against female and Black employees. The Transit Police Department was a separate agency at the time, but became part of the NYPD in 1995.

Before going to Adams for help, Beach-Mathura says she complained to a lieutenant in the Transit Police Department’s personnel office, who was “unhelpful” and told her she should transfer to a different city agency if she wanted a promotion.

Hinds-Radix, the corporation counsel, said in her statement it’s “ludicrous” to suggest Adams would’ve had any power to help Beach-Mathura get a promotion since he had no “sway over promotions of civilian employees” in his capacity as a transit officer.

When Beach-Mathura first filed her notice of claim in November, Adams responded by saying he had never met her. His office did not immediately return a request for comment on that issue.

The alleged assault took place just before Adams launched an ultimately unsuccessful campaign against late Brooklyn Congressman Major Owens in the 1994 election, his first run for public office. Years earlier, in 1991, Adams helped lead a sexist smear campaign against a female Transit Police Department employee who blew the whistle on criminal wrongdoing at the agency — actions Adams apologized for during the 2021 mayoral race, according to a report by The City.

Beach-Mathura has filed a number of lawsuits over the years, including one against Miami-Dade County in which she claimed she was abused by students, including “a 6-year-old,” while working as a teacher. That suit was dismissed without any damages being paid out to Beach-Mathura. It’s unclear why the suit was dismissed.

Beach-Mathura brought the suit against Adams under the Adult Survivors Act, a state law that opened a one-year window for sexual misconduct victims to sue their assailants even if a statute of limitations is expired. She filed her notice of claim the day before that window expired.

“She believes sexual abusers must be held to account, no matter who they are,” said Megan Goddard, Beach-Mathura’s lawyer.