A division director at Los Alamos National Laboratory has retired amid allegations of sexual assault and battery by one of his employees.
Anthony “Tony” Stanford, 56, has been charged with two counts of assault and two counts of battery stemming from several physical interactions with one of his employees, dating to August 2012. Stanford is scheduled to be arraigned in Los Alamos Magistrate Court in March.
Stanford was the Emergency Services Division director and in charge of briefing officials during the Las Conchas Fire in 2011. He lives in Santa Fe.
According to police reports released this week, Stanford is accused of touching a 45-year-old female employee on her leg and, on separate occasions, pinning her against the wall of an elevator and an office.
The woman’s attorney, John Day, said Thursday that Stanford requested sexual acts from her with promises to promote her.
In a statement released Friday morning, Stanford’s attorney, Laurie Gallegos, said: "Mr. Stanford was not arrested, voluntarily provided a statement to the authorities, has produced and will continue to produce extensive evidence supporting his innocence with regard to these charges."
Day claims Stanford was given the option to retire or be fired by LANL. Lab spokesman Kevin Roark confirmed Stanford is no longer an employee, but he would not comment on the circumstances of Stanford’s departure from the lab.
Los Alamos police began investigating the case in January.
According to the police reports, the woman said she repeatedly told Stanford that she was “happily married” and that she had no interest in him.
Nevertheless, she said, he told her that “he found her very attractive, and if she wasn’t married he would pursue her hard.” The woman also said he called her a “sensuous and sensual woman” and claimed that “he was having a hard time concentrating when she was around.”
In November, the woman told officers, Stanford pinned her against the wall of an elevator and “pressed the front of his body against her.” She said she yelled at him and asked him what he thought he was doing, to which, and she said he replied, “You can’t blame a guy for trying.”
The next month, the woman said, Stanford again tried to press her against a wall of an office after he told her that “she could at least give him a kiss or a hug” for Christmas. She told police Stanford had just given her two new wrist watches.
Following the December incident, the woman filed a complaint with the human resources department at LANL. She told police that she “feared retaliation for reporting this because it would not only affect her job but her husband’s as well.” Day said his client’s husband works in the same division.
According to police, Stanford admitted to touching the woman’s legs (in August) and making advances to her in the elevator in November. But he denied pinning her against the wall of the elevator. He said he put one arm against the wall and asked her, “Have you ever done it in an elevator?” He denied any inappropriate physical contact in the December incident, although he did admit to giving her the watches and asking her for a Christmas kiss.
Stanford insisted to police that “he had no intent on having an affair with her and that [his behavior] was ‘flirtatious.’ ” He also said he “obviously” offended the employee, but “he wished she would have been more upfront with him.”
At the end of the interview, the report said, Stanford “stated that she was lying about this and that it spoke to her character.”
Day said the woman has since filed a restraining order against Stanford. State District Judge Sheri Raphaelson approved a "no contact order" on Wednesday, according to Gallegos. Day said Stanford’s “outrageous conduct” has “traumatized” his client and her family.
Contact Nico Roesler at 986-3089 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @nicoroesler.