ROSEBURG, Ore. - On Monday, Senator Sara Gelser said that Senator Jeff Kruse of Roseburg had inappropriately touched her.
She had previously tweeted about her experience without naming names using the hashtag #MeToo. She later confirmed that the senator she was talking about was Kruse.
Gelser said she's reported the inappropriate touching before. Staff members also confirmed seeing this happening.
Residents of Roseburg are reacting in the face of these allegations against someone who not only represents them but that they know.
KEZI spoke with several residents who were shocked to find out, including someone who used to work with him during her time at the Douglas County News, Becky Holm.
”My first thought…knowing Jeff…is that something has to be terribly wrong.”
Holm believes that this must be some kind of misunderstanding. She also thinks most of the people with Roseburg feel that way too.
”I think that Douglas County and the people who know Jeff Kruse do not believe that this happened.”
Moving forward, Senate President Peter Courtney did take action that he called unprecedented.
Courtney removed Kruse from all of his committees and is having the door to his office removed.
The second punishment comes in regards to something else Kruse has been fined for in the past: smoking in his office. Courtney said he hopes this lack of privacy will encourage him to stop smoking in the building.