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Suffolk DA’s race boils over as campaigns accuse coverups, crimes

Interim Suffolk DA Kevin Hayden took fresh aim at his primary election rival, demanding city councilor Ricardo Arroyo answer questions related to an alleged undisclosed past sexual-assault investigation leaked last week.

“Voters deserve to know why Ricardo Arroyo contacted a victim mere hours after claiming to know nothing about the allegations or the women who made them,” a campaign spokesperson for Hayden said in a Sunday release.

“Since these allegations surfaced, Arroyo has pointed fingers and engaged in distraction schemes. But he hasn’t answered any questions. How did he know this victim accused him? Why did he say he knew nothing about the allegations or the women involved and then immediately contact one of the victims?” the campaign said.

Arroyo, the city council’s vice president and also candidate for Suffolk DA, was allegedly the subject of two sexual-assault investigations when he was a teenager, in 2005 and 2007, according to the Boston Globe.  The investigations never resulted in any charges.

Arroyo claims the documents from which the allegations spring were leaked by Hayden’s office in an attempt by Hayden or someone working on his behalf to help him win the September primary.

“BPD has done an investigation and concluded that these records, which are illegal to leak, were not accessed from BPD. The only other place they reside are the Suffolk County DA’s Office. It’s clear that either DA Hayden or someone associated with him illegally leaked those files and did so in a way that intentionally withheld exculpatory information with the intent of misleading voters,” Arroyo’s campaign told the Herald Sunday.

Arroyo’s campaign further claims that the leak was itself a criminal act and that one of the alleged victims is actually a supporter of his run for district attorney.

“The illegal leak – which is punishable by a year in prison – did not include the fact that the 2005 case was determined by law enforcement to be unfounded. In addition, the individual from 2007 is on the record saying Ricardo never assaulted her and has endorsed Ricardo. She has been clear that it is Kevin Hayden who is victimizing her. Kevin Hayden is the one who needs to answer for why he abused the public’s trust for his own political gain,” the Arroyo campaign said.

Hayden’s team seems to think past allegations against Arroyo, which they say were apparently not included on Arroyo’s application to the Massachusetts Bar Association, as required by that association’s rules, disqualify him for the job.

“All of this points to a person who not only lacks the professional experience to be District Attorney but the moral character as well. Voters need to know that the person holding the highest law enforcement job in the county is personally and professionally honest. This does not appear to be the case with Ricardo Arroyo,” the campaign said in a statement.

Dorchester Councilor Frank Baker has filed an order compelling Mayor Michelle Wu to turn over “any” documents related to alleged sexual assault complaints against Ricardo Arroyo.

A copy of the “Section 17F” challenge obtained by the Herald states Baker is seeking reports “related to any of the Boston Police Department’s investigation” of Arroyo “while preserving the victims’ privacy.”

The results of the Democratic primary on September 6 will effectively determine who the next district attorney is, as there is no Republican actively seeking the office.

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