Andrew Yang's wife is sharing her story of sexual assault, one that's pushed her to join a lawsuit against Columbia University and former OB-GYN Robert Hadden. Evelyn Yang says she was seven months pregnant with her first child in 2012 when "pervy" Hadden proceeded to "undress me and examine me internally, ungloved," per a CNN exclusive. "I knew I was being assaulted," but "I just kind of froze like a deer in headlights," she adds. "I remember trying to fix my eyes on a spot on the wall … just waiting for it to be over." She found a new doctor but didn't tell anyone what had happened, believing "there was something I did to invite this kind of behavior." That changed months later when another patient went to police. One of 18 women to accuse Hadden, Yang would testify before a grand jury, which indicted the doctor on multiple felony sex charges.
But Hadden never saw jail time. He lost his license and had to register as a sex offender after agreeing to one count of forcible touching and one count of third-degree sexual abuse in a 2016 plea deal with the Manhattan district attorney's office. The office says its "primary concern was ... making sure he could never do this again." Yang describes the outcome as a gut punch. Learning Hadden was arrested but allowed to return to work weeks before her own assault only added to Yang's pain. She's now one of 32 women claiming Columbia "concealed, conspired, and enabled" Hadden's actions, which allegedly included "surreptitiously licking countless patients' vaginas." "My heart breaks every time I think of what she had to experience," Andrew Yang says. "When victims of abuse come forward, they deserve our belief, support, and protection." The New York Times cites Yang's campaign as saying his wife would not speak further on the subject. (Read more sexual assault stories.)