CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WTRF)– – Former house of delegates member, Austin Hayes, is being sued by a woman identified only by Jane Doe for using his position to garner sexual favors from the woman.

According to West Virginia Record, The plaintiff was an alleged unpaid lobbyist and citizen advocate working on the passage of a Native American Tribal recognition bill in the legislature. The complaint was filed on February 27th in Kanawha Circuit Court against Hayes and the West Virginia Legislature.

Per the complaint the woman, a descendant of the Cheraw tribe and member of the West Virginia Native American Indian Federation was an unpaid lobbyist and citizen advocate. She was working with Haynes on the passage of a Native American tribal recognition bill in the Legislature since 2019.

The woman, Jane Doe, tells West Virginia Record, that Haynes began sending her messages via Facebook Messenger in 2019 with promises to introduce the bill if he won the 2020 election.

After Haynes won, the two exchanged phone numbers and spoke regularly about the bill, but he never introduced the bill as he had promised, but continued to send her messages, West Virginia Record reports.

In January 2021, the plaintiff states the messages began becoming more of a personal nature with Hayes. Hayes Asking if she had a boyfriend and if she had ever used sex toys or masturbated, the complaint states.

The plaintiff tried to redirect the conversations away from the sexual content and back to the bill, she rarely answered his questions or would respond with ‘LOL’.

The complaint also states that in late February and early March 2021, the messages became even more inappropriate, including one conversation in which Haynes tells the plaintiff he had masturbated to completion whilst looking at a photo of her. He then asked her what she thought of his admission and if she had ever masturbated. The complaint states that she did not answer Haynes and he apologized the next day.

The harassing calls did not end there. Haynes continued to message her and went as far as calling her in the middle of the night staying silent until the call ended. He then messaged her stating that he “got off” when she answered the phone.

In March 2021 the plaintiff stated she started receiving photos of Hayne’s penis, with him asking if the plaintiff would have sex with him in support of the bill passage, stating that “on several occasions, constituents would exchange sexual intercourse for bill passage.”
According to West Virginia Record “the next day, she says Haynes messaged her to say he ‘wasn’t insinuating that you sleep around to get the bill passed. I was just telling you what happens in Charleston sometimes …’ “.

West Virginia Record reports that throughout March Haynes continued his harassment, messaging the plaintiff, and giving graphic details of his sexual exploits with other delegates.

The complaint states that Haynes abused his position to receive sexual gratification for bill passage and continuously harassed the plaintiff by sending unwanted sexual messages and photos, despite her efforts to keep the relationship strictly professional.
The complaint states that Haynes violated the West Virginia Computer Crime and Abuse Act and the West Virginia Human Rights Act.

In the complaint the plaintiff states that Haynes and his actions caused her severe emotional stress and is seeking compensatory damages for embarrassment, humiliation, annoyance, inconvenience, aggravation, loss of dignity, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, and mental anguish. She is seeking punitive damages, pre-and post-judgment interests, attorney fees, and court costs.

House Speaker Roger Hanshaw told West Virginia Record that he questions having the House included in the complaint. He states that “what former Delegate Haynes is accused of doing is reprehensible in every way, this complaint, however, is neither appropriate nor is it accurate. the joinder of the Legislature attempted with this complaint is frivolous.” He wants to see the victim of these alleged crimes to see justice, but does not believe that will be achieved in the way the complaint was filed.

Haynes was running for re-election last year when the claims were first reported by the local media. Later reports came out with claims from more women with similar allegations. He lost his re-election bid last November.