Report: Sen. Mallory McMorrow filing sexual harassment complaint against Lucido for alleged 2018 incident

State Sen. Mallory McMorrow at Lansing Community College, June 4, 2019 | Susan J. Demas

State Sen. Mallory McMorrow (D-Royal Oak) will be filing a sexual harassment report against fellow state Sen. Peter Lucido (R-Shelby Twp.) about a 2018 incident she said happened during Senate orientation, Crain’s reports Tuesday morning.

This comes as the Senate Business Office already has an investigation into Lucido for comments he made last week to Michigan Advance reporter Allison Donahue. The senator, who is in GOP caucus leadership, told Donahue a group of De La Salle Collegiate schoolboys could “have a lot of fun with you” among several other remarks.

I tried to interview Sen. Peter Lucido. He told me a group of schoolboys ‘could have a lot of fun’ with me.

The Michigan Advance last Wednesday ran Donahue’s first-person story. The school has since apologized. Lucido initially gave a brief apology on Twitter but has since given several different accounts to media about his remarks.

Crain’s reports on Tuesday that McMorrow decided to file a complaint after Donahue came forward and Lansing-based MIRS News declined to withdraw Lucido’s “Senator of the Year” award, despite her request.

“Once I saw [Donahue] give an interview and she said ‘it made me feel small,’ I felt guilty,” McMorrow told Crain’s. “I felt like had I said something sooner maybe this wouldn’t have happened to her.”

McMorrow did not immediately return requests for comment. She told Crain’s reporter Chad Livengood that at the 2018 orientation, which included sexual harassment training, Lucido allegedly “shook my hand and with his other hand held my low back with his fingers on my hips, effectively upper rear, and we had a back-and-forth conversation.”

MIRS News declines to yank Lucido’s 2019 ‘Senator of the Year’ honor

McMorrow added that the way Lucido looked at her body and his remarks “felt really degrading and deflating.” State Sen. Rosemary Bayer (D-Beverly Hills) recalled the interaction in a Crain’s interview. McMorrow said Lucido has made subsequent comments, such as about her hair.

The publication said Lucido responded via text, “I categorically deny this allegation, which I believe is completely untrue and politically motivated.”

Neither Lucido nor Senate GOP spokeswoman Amber McCann immediately returned requests for comment.

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Susan J. Demas is a 19-year journalism veteran and one of the state’s foremost experts on Michigan politics, appearing on MSNBC, CNN, NPR and WKAR-TV’s “Off the Record.” In addition to serving as Editor-in-Chief, she is the Advance’s chief columnist, writing on women, LGBTQs, the state budget, the economy and more. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Farough & Associates, Michigan’s premier political communications firm. For almost five years, Susan was the Editor and Publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, the most-cited political newsletter in the state. Susan’s award-winning political analysis has run in more than 80 national, international and regional media outlets, including the Guardian U.K., NBC News, the New York Times, the Detroit News and MLive. She is the only Michigan journalist to be named to the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Reporters,” the Huffington Post’s list of “Best Political Tweeters” and the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Bloggers.” Susan was the recipient of a prestigious Knight Foundation fellowship in nonprofits and politics. She served as Deputy Editor for MIRS News and helped launch the Michigan Truth Squad, the Center for Michigan’s fact-checking project. She started her journalism career reporting on the Iowa caucuses for The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette. Susan has hiked over 3,000 solo miles across four continents and climbed more than 60 mountains. She also enjoys dragging her husband and two teenagers along, even if no one else wants to sleep in a tent anymore.