Three women came forward in two separate news reports Wednesday accusing Donald Trump of groping them or kissing them without their consent.
According to the New York Times, one woman alleges that during a flight more than 30 years ago, Trump grabbed her breasts and tried to put his hand up her skirt, and a second says that Trump kissed her on the mouth outside an elevator in 2005. In a separate report, the Palm Beach Post reports that a third woman says that 13 years ago, Trump groped her rear end at one of his resorts.
The news comes just five days after the Washington Post released video that shows Trump and Billy Bush having a lewd conversation about women, with Trump saying that he can do anything he wants to women because he’s famous.
In an interview with the New York Times, Trump denied the allegations, and Trump spokesman Jason Miller called it “fiction.”
Trump was asked at Sunday’s debate if he had ever behaved in such a way, but he denied having done so.
Jessica Leeds, 74, told the Times that she was traveling in first class on business when she encountered Trump on that flight more than three decades ago. She said that about 45 minutes after takeoff, Trump lifted the armrest and began to touch her.
“He was like an octopus,” Leeds said. “His hands were everywhere.”
Rachel Crooks was a 22-year-old receptionist for a real estate development company with officers in Trump Tower in New York City. She said that in 2005 she encountered Trump by an elevator in the building. She introduced herself to Trump and shook his hand, but Trump would not let go and began kissing her on the cheek. He then kissed her directly on the mouth.
“It was so inappropriate,” Crooks recalled in an interview. “I was so upset that he thought I was so insignificant that he could do that.”
Neither Crooks nor Leeds told their stories to authorities, but the Times was able to corroborate their accounts with multiple people close to them.
According to the Palm Beach Post, Mindy McGillivray, 36, said that in 2003, Trump grabbed her rear end while she was standing with a group of people at Mar-a-Lago, Trump's Palm Beach, Fla., estate. She was there with a friend, photographer Ken Davidoff, who was taking photographs for a concert.
When she was asked whether what she felt could have been someone else bumping into her by accident, McGillivray said no: “This was a pretty good nudge. More of a grab. It was pretty close to the center of my butt. I was startled. I jumped.’’
According to the Post, Davidoff said he recalls when McGillivray said to him, shortly after the alleged incident, “‘Donald just grabbed my ass!’’’
McGillivray said she never reported it to authorities. She told the news site that she remembers thinking, “‘OK, am I going to say something now and make a scene or be quiet?’ I chose to stay quiet.”
On Wednesday, CBS News released video footage from a 1992 Entertainment Tonight Christmas special in which Trump says about a young girl, “I am going to be dating her in 10 years. Can you believe it?”
In a statement issued Wednesday night regarding the accusations, Jennifer Palmieri, communications director for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's campaign, said: “This disturbing story sadly fits everything we know about the way Donald Trump has treated women. These reports suggest that he lied on the debate stage and that the disgusting behavior he bragged about in the tape is more than just words.”