After KUOW reported Thursday that five women have accused Capitol Hill business owner David Meinert of sexual misconduct, including rape, Meinert took to Facebook to respond. Referencing an allegation that in 2007 he raped a then-city employee, Meinert wrote that at the time he "took two polygraph tests that showed I was being truthful in my statements about what happened."
But copies of the polygraph report provided to The Stranger by the communications firm representing Meinert show that those tests did not ask directly about the substance of the woman’s accusation against Meinert. The tests asked whether the woman performed oral sex on him and about comments he says she made, but did not ask about whether the sex was consensual or about the woman’s claims that she repeatedly rebuffed his advances.
According to KUOW, the woman told police at the time she was at a happy hour with her boss and Meinert. Meinert then left to attend another business meeting, where the city employee joined him later. At that second location, the woman says Meinert followed her into a bathroom, exposed his penis to her, and, after she told him "I can't do this" and said she was on her period, pulled out her tampon, according to KUOW. The woman said she pushed Meinert away; Meinert said the incident didn't happen. Afterward, the woman and Meinert both say she gave him a blow job, according to KUOW. Meinert claimed it was consensual. The woman described Meinert putting his fingers in her underwear, trying to have sex with her, and pushing her down to the floor of the car until she gave him a blowjob, KUOW reports.
The woman told KUOW she did give Meinert a blow job but said, "I felt at the time it was the way to get out of the car." A prosecutor declined to file charges in the case, writing that the woman "provided a series of excuses" to not have sex with Meinert "without ever firmly refusing him." Another investigation, conducted because the woman filed a sexual harassment claim against the city over her boss's behavior, found the woman had "diminished credibility" but did not make a finding on the sexual assault allegation, according to KUOW.
Stacy Pearson, the strategist representing Meinert, provided to The Stranger reports from two polygraph tests administered to Meinert in May 2007, about two months after the alleged assault. Both were requested by Meinert and the questions were “constructed and reviewed with Dave Meinert,” the reports say.
The first test, administered on May 3, 2007, asked Meinert two versions of the same question: Had he lied when he asked the woman to perform oral sex on him “and she did so without saying a word.” The second test, administered on May 11, 2007, asked Meinert two questions about sexually suggestive comments he said the woman made before and after the blow job. Both tests found he answered truthfully.
However, neither test asked Meinert about the alleged incident in the bathroom or whether the woman rejected his advances leading up to the oral sex. According to KUOW’s story, Meinert and the woman both agree she gave him a blow job. They disagree about whether it was consensual.
Along with the 2007 allegation, four other women described encounters with Meinert to KUOW. The other accusers include a woman who said Meinert raped her in her home, a woman who said Meinert stuck his tongue in her mouth in an attempt to kiss her, a woman who said Meinert gripped her throat while he masturbated on to her skirt, and a woman who said she had to push Meinert out of her apartment after refusing to have sex with him.
In interviews with KUOW, Meinert admitted to mistreating women and being "pushy or handsy" but either denied or said he did not recall specific alleged instances of sexual assault or rape.