Exclusive: Woman at Center of Gov. Scandal -- in Her Own Words

"State troopers kept calling me and harassing me to drop the charges," said the woman

By Jonathan Dienst
|  Friday, Feb 26, 2010  |  Updated 8:17 PM EDT
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An exclusive look inside the the woman at the center of Governor Paterson's scandal

An exclusive look inside the the woman at the center of Governor Paterson's scandal

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Audio Testimony of Woman at the Center of Paterson Aide Scandal

Woman tells judge of her harowing ordeal with both domestic abuse and state troopers' efforts to silence her.
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NBCNewYork has obtained an audiotape of the woman at the center of the controversy surrounding the governor, a top aide and the State Police.

The tape shows how the woman went to family court in the Bronx to try to press forward with charges of domestic violence against David Johnson.  But she told the family court judge that she had been unsuccessful serving Johnson the order of protection. 

An excerpt of the conversation follows:

Court: Was Mr. Johnson served?

Woman: No Ma'am.  He refused to ... He avoided it.

Court: Do you know where he is?  Where he lives? Where he works?

Woman: Well he was living with me. He works for the Governor - Governor Paterson.  He's his senior advisor.

Woman: But I got in contact with ... Well the State Police contacted me because they didn't want me to get an order of protection or press charges or anything.

Court:  Here's my question. My question was he served? The answer was no.  Do you know where he works - Yes you do.  And do you wish to proceed?

Woman: Yes Ma'am.

(In another part of the tape, the woman describes the abuse and the alleged cover-up)

Court:  You have bruises on your arms

Woman: Yes, Ma'am.  I'm scared he is going to come back.

Court: I am going to issue a temporary order or protection

Woman: I'm glad you are doing this because I thought it was going to be swept under the table because he's like a government official.  I have problems with even calling the police because  state troopers kept calling me and harassing me to drop the charges and I wouldn't.  I've never been through this before.
 

She alleged members of the State Police came to New York City to try to convince her not to press charges. She later claimed Governor Paterson called her and she eventually did not go forward with the domestic violence case

The Superintendent of the State Police Harry Corbitt has claimed he does not believe his officers did anything wrong. 

But Corbitt's boss, Denise O'Donnell, deputy secretary for public safety, resigned over the growing controversy. 

"The fact that the Governor and members of the State Police have acknowledged direct contact with a woman who had filed for an order of protection against a senior member of the Governor's staff is a very serious matter," O'Donnell said.  She called the actions by the State Police and the call by the Governor "unacceptable."

Paterson has asked Attorney General Cuomo to investigate.  He declined to answer questions about his phone call or the alleged incident involving his aide.  As for Jackson, he resigned in the wake of the controversy.

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