Martinez aide accused of grabbing schools lobbyist

Posted at: 10/09/2012 10:42 AM
By: The Associated Press

Photo: Keith Gardner
Photo: Keith Gardner

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - A lobbyist for Albuquerque Public Schools has accused a top aide to Gov. Susana Martinez of grabbing her arm and yelling at her in a threatening way during a recess of legislative committee hearing.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that lobbyist Carrie Menapace alleged in a letter to the governor that Chief of Staff Keith Gardner walked up behind the lobbyist as they were in the hall, grabbed her arm, continued to painfully hold her arm and yelled a warning about opposing Martinez's education bills.

Gardner says he never grabbed Menapace's arm or treated her aggressively and points to surveillance video as proof.

Two police officers who watched the video concluded that they believe the footage neither proves nor disproves the incident happened because it was low-quality and continually panning.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)