Army veteran tells CNN Franken groped her during 2003 photo op

- An Army veteran is the fifth woman to accuse Sen. Al Franken of sexual misconduct, claiming he groped her during a photo op while she was deployed in Kuwait in 2003, according to a Thursday CNN report

Stephanie Kemplin, 41, of Mainville, Ohio told CNN she met Franken when he was visiting American troops in the Middle East with the USO in December 2003. She alleges he cupped her right breast while they were getting ready to take a photo together. 

The report included the photo, which shows Kemplin, who was 27 and a military officer at the time, smiling with the left side of her face pressed up against Franken's right cheek and his arm wrapped around her back. Kemplin says she turned to shift Franken's hand off her breast before the picture was taken. 

In response to the latest accusation, Franken's office issued a statement: "As Sen. Franken made clear this week, he takes thousands of photos and has met tens of thousands of people and he has never intentionally engaged in this kind of conduct. He remains fully committed to cooperating with the ethics investigation." 

Radio host Leann Tweeden was the first woman to come forward earlier this month, accusing Franken of kissing and groping her while on a USO tour in 2006. She also released a photo of Franken grinning and reaching for her chest, as if to grope her, while she slept on a military aircraft during the tour. 

Three other women have since come forward accusing Franken of unwanted touching. Lindsay Menz of Frisco, Texas told CNN last week that Franken grabbed her buttocks while they were taking a photo together at the Minnesota State Fair in 2010. 

Two more women, whose identities were not revealed, told the Huffington Post that Franken grabbed their buttocks during separate incidents at campaign events in 2007 and 2008. 

Franken returned to work at the United States Capitol on Monday for the first time since the allegations came to light, telling reporters that he is going to work to regain trust. He has agreed to cooperate with an ethics investigation, although it is unclear when that will begin. 

Up Next:


  • Popular

  • Recent

Stories you may be interested in – includes advertiser stories