New York Times Publishes Another Paterson Report

The latest The New York Times story on New York Governor David Paterson adds another wrinkle to the scandal involving an alleged assault by Paterson aide David Johnson.

Today’s Times story centers around Paterson’s actions around the time of paper’s Feb. 16 publication of its initial investigation into the Paterson administration. Citing three sources with knowledge of Paterson’s role in a domestic dispute between Johnson and Sherr-una Booker, the Times reports today that Paterson had his press secretary write a statement about the dispute in hopes that Booker would endorse it. The statement asserted that the confrontation between Booker and Johnson had not been violent and that charges against Johnson had been dropped.

Booker refused to go along with the statement, which she called “a lie,” the Times reports. The paper says it’s unclear whether Paterson was made aware that Booker believed the statement to be untrue. The paper goes on to say that even though the Paterson administration became aware by Feb. 17 that Booker had tried to get a restraining order against Johnson, but Paterson did not dispute a statement saying that Johnson had been accused of violence against women. The following day, Johnson said of Johnson in a radio interview that Johnson had not faced any accusations of violence since he was hit by drug charges 20 years ago.