Montgomery County is the focal point of allegations that women have made against Brett Kavanaugh, U.S. Supreme Court nominee, in connection with sexual assault.
In a sworn declaration issued by her attorney Michael Avenatti, D.C. resident Julie Swetnick said she and other teenage girls were sexually assaulted by multiple teenage boys at local parties, and named Kavanaugh, then a student at Georgetown Preparatory School, and his then-classmate Mark Judge as two of her assailants. She said they and other boys would, after consuming alcohol, behave aggressively toward the girls at parties she attended while in high school. She said she attended about 10 parties in the D.C. area at which Kavanaugh and Judge were also present.
In addition, Swetnick wrote that at parties she attended, boys would line up outside a room to take turns sexually assaulting a teenage girl who had been drugged beforehand and claimed Kavanaugh and Judge both participated in that.
“I also witnessed efforts by Mark Judge, Brett Kavanaugh and others to cause girls to become inebriated and disoriented so they could then be ‘gang raped’ in a side room or bedroom by a ‘train’ of numerous boys. I have a firm recollection of seeing boys lined up outside rooms at many of these parties waiting for their ‘turn’ with a girl inside the room. These boys included Mark Judge and Brett Kavanaugh,” she wrote.
She also wrote that she was a victim of one of the “gang” or “train” rapes in which Judge and Kavanaugh were present around 1982. She believes she was drugged by a substance placed in what she had been drinking.
David Kahn, a former social studies resource teacher, taught Julie Swetnick world history when she was a junior at Gaithersburg High School.
“She [Swetnick] was very truthful and of good, solid character,” Kahn said.
Kahn said Swetnick earned As and Bs as a student and received better grades than the average student would in his class.
Christine Blasey Ford, who alleged Kavanaugh assaulted her, mentioned multiple locations in Montgomery County when she spoke at day five of Kavanaugh’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Thursday. She attended Holton Arms School in Bethesda.
During day five, Kavanaugh read from entries in a calendar from the year Ford said an assault occurred. Much of his time involved training and practicing for football at Georgetown Prep, as well as weightlifting or training at Montgomery Blair High School, also located in the County.
Kavanaugh said he never sexually assaulted anyone.
David Meyers, Rockville resident, went on a few dates with Swetnick 25 to 30 years ago, and said he believes her allegations.
“She was a sweet lady who I don’t think has the capacity to lie about anything,” Meyers said Wednesday. “I think she’s very straightforward. If she said it happened, I’m sure it happened.”
He said he was surprised to hear that she held on to that story for so long, given her truthfulness and honesty. During the time they had been going on dates, she did not tell him that she had been attacked, as she described in her sworn declaration.
“I’ve always thought her as being a straightforward, honest person,” said Meyers, later adding, “She must be suffering some world of hurt having kept this to herself about being gang raped.”
He said he believes he met her in Washington D.C. Swetnick attended concerts with other professional musicians from the D.C. area at the Kennedy Center. He plays oboe professionally. She attended large parties he held at his home in Potomac at the time, for which he and other musicians would provide entertainment. They went on a few dates, and she went to his house “more than a few” times.
“We were always very friendly,” Meyers said. “I got to meet some of the people she knew.”
Meyers met a few of her friends with whom she attended concerts. He has lived in the County for 45 years. Meyers previously lived in Potomac, and he attended Brooklyn Technical High School New York.
Meyers has not communicated with Swetnick in several years.
Susanna A. Jones, Head of School at Holton Arms, posted a statement online Sept. 27.
“That sexual assault happens among teenagers across this country, at public and private schools alike, is a fact,” Jones wrote toward the beginning of her letter.
“Probably the most compelling aspect of the Upper School programming comes in the form of older girls sharing their own experiences around these issues,” Jones wrote. “These accounts transform these topics from the abstract to something much more real. Moreover, the older girls’ openness in talking about these sensitive issues models speaking up and taking action, sharing so others can benefit from their experiences instead of being silenced by shame.”
Georgetown Prep posted a statement on Sept. 28 regarding the hearing and in response to social media posts and news media coverage.
“The image that has been presented on social media and in various news outlets depicts recklessness, illegal conduct, and lack of respect for persons,” according to the statement. “Worse, many blame these faults on institutional indifference.
“But the temptations, and the failings, presented in these stories are not unique to Georgetown Prep. The problems and abuses of alcohol and drugs, sexual assault and misconduct, emotional and physical violence toward others are real; educators at every institution of primary, secondary, or higher learning in our nation face these problems every day.”
Ford mentioned Columbia Country Club in Bethesda in her testimony during the hearing.
Phone calls to Columbia Country Club were not returned before deadline.
Phone calls to the Safeway grocery store located at the intersection of River Road and Falls Road, where Mark Judge may have previously worked, were forwarded to Safeway’s corporate office, but were not returned. Emails and phone messages left for the Maryland public relations person for Safeway were not returned before deadline, either.
Neal Earley also contributed to this story.