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Flynn, Kennedy pull endorsements of Ricardo Arroyo for DA after old allegations surface

Three big-name endorsers have pulled their support for district attorney candidate Ricardo Arroyo following a report of old sexual-assault investigations against the candidate who’s now engaged in a mud-slinging fight with sitting DA Kevin Hayden as other pols scramble to avoid weighing in.

City Council President Ed Flynn, former U.S. Rep. Joe Kennedy III and Iron Workers Local 7 all rescinded their support for Arroyo’s campaign for Suffolk DA on Wednesday even as other councilors stood by him and the highest-profile endorsers in Mayor Michelle Wu, U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley and U.S. Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey avoided questions.

The Boston Globe on Tuesday evening dropped a story that outlined two allegations from the 2000s against the now-34-year-old Arroyo, who’s currently a Boston city councilor. He was never criminally charged, and he maintains his innocence, as he insisted in a press conference Wednesday afternoon in which he said he would not stop his run or resign from the city council.

Among the other details in the Globe article were statements from police at the time that they’d spoken with Arroyo and his lawyer — which he denies happened. The Globe reported that he wrote on his bar application that he’d never been the subject of a criminal investigation, so that distinction could matter in terms of his professional standing with the bar.

Both Arroyo and Hayden immediately seized on the report to hammer each other. Arroyo in the press conference blasted the leaking of the documents, suggesting it was a political hit job by Hayden’s DA office that warranted its own criminal investigation over leaks.

“Sadly, what has now become clear is that the current district attorney or an official working on his behalf, just weeks before this election is selectively and illegally leaked incomplete information to the media,” Arroyo said. “This criminal act and abuse of power was clearly done to harm my reputation and impact an election in which Kevin Hayden’s administration has a vested interest.”

In the press conference, he was flanked by supporters, including fellow City Councilors Tania Fernandes Anderson and Kendra Lara. A lawyer saying she represented one of the two women who’d been an accuser in 2007 read a statement from the woman saying that Arroyo had never assaulted her.

Hayden’s campaign fired back, focusing on disparities between what the Globe alleged and what Arroyo claimed.

“In the recent Globe story Ricardo Arroyo was clearly caught lying multiple times to reporters as he made seemingly frantic attempts to cover up the disturbing accusations against him,” a Hayden spokesman said. “In the statement he put out after the fact he continues to change his story while also tossing our completely false and unfounded accusations in order to deflect from his own misconduct.”

Hayden’s DA office then put out a statement saying they “are not going to engage in a Trumpian attempt to deflect attention from serious allegations.” The office declined to release any files.

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