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Schwarzenegger irked about leak of discussion on groping inquiry

By Associated Press
Published November 7, 2003

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Gov.-elect Arnold Schwarzenegger will hire a private investigator to look into allegations that he groped women, but he may keep the results from the state attorney general, a spokesman said Thursday.

Schwarzenegger's reluctance to turn over the results of the investigation stem from remarks Attorney General Bill Lockyer made earlier Thursday. The Democrat said he advised Schwarzenegger that the misconduct allegations "are not going to go away" and he should cooperate with an independent investigation.

Schwarzenegger spokesman Rob Stutzman said those statements violated attorney-client privilege and have forced Schwarzenegger to reconsider whether he would provide any information to Lockyer.

"In regard to a review of allegations that surfaced late in the campaign, the governor-elect had already decided to engage a well-respected investigative firm to look into the allegations," Stutzman said. "He had intended to instruct the investigators to turn over the final results of that investigation to the attorney general; he will now reconsider that option."

Lockyer said he spoke with Schwarzenegger as recently as Wednesday about the accusations that surfaced during the final days of his gubernatorial campaign.

The allegations won't go away "until he is willing to have some form of independent, third-party review of those complaints to see if there's any criminal liability or not," Lockyer said.

Stutzman said Schwarzenegger was "extremely disappointed" in Lockyer's remarks.

The attorney general said he had no plans to open an investigation because that is generally the jurisdiction of local district attorneys.

But a spokeswoman for the district attorney's office in Los Angeles County, where some of the incidents reportedly took place, said any investigation would have to originate with police agencies.

Five days before the election, the Los Angeles Times detailed allegations from six women who said Schwarzenegger groped or sexually harassed them between 1975 and 2000. By the Oct. 7 election, the number had grown to 16.

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