Lobbyist claims state representative exposed himself
Rep. Michael Garcia, assistant House majority leader in the Colorado legislature and former teacher at CU, resigned Feb. 1 from the State House of Representatives after allegations that he exposed himself to a female lobbyist in January.
Garcia served as Youth Council for Public Policy coordinator for the INVST Community Studies program at CU from May 2003 to Dec. 2007. He taught his last class in fall 2007.
In a statement released Friday, Garcia said his actions were consensual the night of the alleged incident.
The statement obtained by the Denver Post reads, “Initial press reports are highly inaccurate regarding my alleged conduct. The other party and I engaged in consensual conduct that was inappropriate given my position in the legislature and the fact that the other party is a lobbyist. As a result, I have made the difficult decision to resign. I apologize for any hardship this has caused my constituents, friends, family and colleagues.”
According to the Denver Post, the allegations are that Garcia and a woman lobbyist were playing pool at the Lancer Lounge in Denver after a fundraiser on Jan. 7 when he exposed himself to her.
Garcia is no longer associated with CU and has completed his work with INVST Community Studies.
CU spokesman Bronson Hilliard said Garcia currently has no teaching role at CU. He finished teaching last semester and resigned as the Youth Council for Public Council Coordinator over Christmas break.
In fall 2007, Garcia taught INVS 1513, a course called “Civic Engagement: Using the Electoral Process as a Tool for Social Change.”
In a letter addressed to Peter Simons of the Institute for Ethical and Civic Engagement on Jan. 15, Garcia described the activities of the class.
In a class of nine students and several high school students, the class learned civic engagement by meeting Boulder City Council candidates, former President Bill Clinton and presidential candidate Sen. Hillary Clinton. Students also volunteered for local campaigns and creating their own PAC packets.
Some students said they are relieved that Garcia is no longer a teacher.
Sophomore psychology major Michael Lambuth said he would feel uncomfortable knowing a teacher had been accused of exposing himself to someone.
“I think it would be a little inappropriate for him to continue teaching,” Lambuth said.
Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Marcy Franklin at email@example.com.