The campaign for Roy Moore's beleaguered run for the U.S. Senate seat of Alabama released three statements from former Gadsden Mall employees in order to refute a story claiming that Moore had been banned from the mall because of alleged overtures to underage girls.
What do the statements say?
The Moore campaign said the statements counter the story that he was banned from the Gadsden Mall.
Johnny Adams was the operations manager at the mall for 14 years, and was employed by the mall for 26 total years.
"In my 26 years working at Gadsden Mall, I never heard anything about Roy Moore being banned from the mall or any other mention of issues concerning him," Adams said. "As the operations manager overseeing mall security, I would have been aware of something like that."
Another statement came from Johnnie V. Sanders, who worked at the mall from the late 1970s until the mid-2000s.
"As an employee of the Gadsden Mall for Morrison's Cafeteria Corporation from the late 1970s through the mid-2000s, I would like to put forth a statement in regards to the allegations against Judge Roy Moore," he wrote. "During my time at the Gadsden Mall, I formed many lifelong relationships including one with Barnes Boyle and his wife, Brenda. Barnes Boyle was manager of the Gadsden Mall and Brenda was my manager at Morrison's Cafeteria for many years.
"Because of this relationship, I was abreast on the latest situations that happened throughout the Gadsden Mall during that time period. There was a prominent man of Etowah County, whom is now deceased that was banned for reasons such as the allegations against Judge Moore," he continued. "However, due to respect for the family, I decline to reveal his name. Despite allegations against other patrons of the mall, I never heard of Roy Moore's name come in conversation with any such misconduct against women or a supposed banning from the Gadsden Mall."
The third statement was from Barnes Boyle, who was the former manager of the mall from 1981 until 1986.
"We did have written reports and things," Boyle said. "To my knowledge, he was not banned from the mall."
What was the original story?
Various employees and other witnesses have substantiated the rumor that Moore had been banned from the Gadsden Mall because of alleged overtures to underage women. A former mall employee, Greg Legat, spoke to CNN about what he had heard.
“We talked about other people,” he said, “and then somebody said, ‘Don’t forget about Roy Moore.’ And I asked, ‘What about Roy Moore?’ and uh, they said, ‘Well he’s banned from the mall.'”
“I said why is he banned,” he added, “and the police officer wouldn’t tell me, he said, ‘If you see him, let me know I’ll take care of him.'”
“So what did you eventually learn as to the reason why he was banned from the mall?” CNN's Gary Tuchman asked.
“I was told that he was bothering girls in the mall,” Legat replied.
“In what way?” Tuchman asked.
“I don’t know exactly,” he said. “That he was approaching them and talking to them.”
He clarified to say that he meant teenage girls.