Sexual harassment allegations received against now-former Rep. J - - Jackson, MS

Sexual harassment allegations received against now-former Rep. John Moore

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

A longtime lawmaker who announced his retirement Friday is facing sexual harassment allegations.

John Moore served in the legislature more than 20 years and was House Education chairman for six years.

Some of Moore's now-former colleagues in the House, including those who were on his education committee, say they’re  surprised to learn of the allegations. But some members admitted they thought the abrupt timing of the resignation was odd.

Speaker Philip Gunn has confirmed that multiple allegations of sexual harassment regarding John Moore were received.

"We take any such allegations very seriously," said Gunn. "We have followed protocol every step of the way and made sure that we have sought advice of counsel and followed that advice to the letter."

We're told that advice was to launch an investigation. But the investigation will no longer move forward since he's resigned. Monday, Moore said he didn't know of any complaints against him. But Speaker Gunn says Moore was aware of the investigation. 

"We're very sensitive to the privacy of the ones who've come forward," added Gunn. "And I admire the courage of the women who came forward."

Moore told us Friday night about his decision to resign. He cited health reasons and noted he originally thought he'd stick around for one more session.

But he changed his mind upon realizing it would likely be another busy year for education matters. Then, he spoke at length about looking forward to spending more time with his family.

Governor Bryant sent this statement: 

"I am certain Speaker Gunn has taken the appropriate steps now that his office has been notified of the allegations. All workplaces should be free from intimidation and harassment, which is why I issued an executive order in January requiring all state employees to complete an online training course designed to prevent this behavior."

Moore's resignation was effective Sunday. The Mississippi House has regularly held training for all members and employees regarding these issues.

Here is a copy of the House Discrimination and Harassment Policy:

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