Julie Swetnick, the third woman to come forward with sexual misconduct allegations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, backed off some of those claims in a television interview that aired Tuesday night.
NBC, which interviewed her, also said none of the four people she said would corroborate her story have done so. Two didn’t respond to the network’s requests for comment, one had died and the fourth said he didn’t remember Ms. Swetnick and didn’t think they socialized. They also noted her claims differed from the ones made in her sworn affidavit before airing the interview.
In a sworn declaration last week Ms. Swetnick said Judge Kavanaugh, as a high school student in the early 1980s, was “present” when she was a victim of a “train” rape. She went further and claimed to witness the two boys purposefully “spiking” drinks to get girls drunk enough for these rapes to occur.
In the NBC interview, though, she said only that she saw Judge Kavanaugh and a friend, Mark Judge, hanging around punch containers and giving out cups to girls, but noted she did not know what he may have done.
She also now says she doesn’t know if he was part of the gang rape she says she suffered — but she still suspects him.
“I cannot specifically say that he was one of the ones that assaulted me,” she said, “but earlier at that party, I saw Brett Kavanaugh there, I saw Mark Judge there.”
When asked if he was involved with the any alleged gang rapes, Ms. Swetnick said it was “too coincidental” to think otherwise.
Judge Kavanaugh strongly denied Ms. Swetnick’s allegations, calling them a “joke” and something from the “Twilight Zone.” Mr. Judge has also denied the accusations.
Reports have come forward highlighting Ms. Swetnick’s past with legal disputes, including a dismissed lawsuit from a former employer and a restraining order from her ex-husband that was not approved. Both Ms. Swetnick and her lawyer Michael Avenatti, who also presents porn star Stormy Daniels, have dismissed the reports and said the lawsuits were a farce.
Ms. Swetnick told NBC she talked about the attack with her mother and with a Montgomery County police officer. Both her mother and the officer she named to NBC are dead, and the network said the county told her it could take up to 30 days to respond to a request for any records.
On Tuesday Ms. Swetnick’s story faced more pushback — this time from a former friend who contacted the Judiciary Committee of his own experience with Ms. Swetnick in the early 1990s.
He said in a letter to senators that she picked him up at a bar, not caring that he was married, and they grew close — though stopped short of sex after he learned of her fondness for “sex with more than one guy at a time.”
“She first tried sex with multiple guys while in high school and still liked it from time to time,” Dennis Ketterer, the former friend, wrote.
He broke things off, but in 1996, running for Congress as a Democrat, he contacted her father to try to reach her. Her father “told me that she had psychological and other problems.”
Mr. Ketterer, in the letter, said he came forward now, knowing the pain his admissions would have on his family, because he was so upset by watching Judge Kavanagh’s wife “looking so sad” at last week’s hearing.
“I felt that she needed to know that in this instance, her husband was being mischaracterized,” he wrote.
Ms. Swetnick’s lawyer, Michael Avenatti, called Mr. Ketterer’s letter “garbage.”