SALT LAKE CITY — Michael Avenatti, the lawyer representing Julie Swetnick in her sexual misconduct claim against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, has threatened to sue Dennis Ketterer over statements he made during an exclusive interview on KSL Newsradio.
Ketterer appeared to KSL’s Dave & Dujanovic yesterday to discuss his allegation that Swetnick was a willing participant in an incident she has described as a “gang rape”.
KSL Newsradio provided Avenatti with a copy the interview and invited him to appear on the show to respond to Ketterer’s statements. Avenatti, instead, sent this response:
“Complete garbage. My client will be suing Mr. Ketterer for defamation for his bogus and outrageous statements.”
The Julie Swetnick controversy
Avenatti became a household name when he filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump on behalf of adult film actress Stormy Daniels. In the lawsuit, Avenatti claimed President Trump had had an affair with Daniels in 2006.
His name made headlines again after President Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. As the Senate appeared poised to confirm the nomination, several women came forward and accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault during his high school and college years.
Avenatti represented one of those women, Julie Swetnick. She offered an account of a college party, which she said Kavanaugh attended, at which she was “gang raped.”
Her story was challenged, however, by a man named Dennis Ketterer. Ketterer contacted Utah Senator Orrin Hatch and said he had been romantically involved with Swetnick years after the party in question. Ketterer did not believe Swetnick’s account, based his experiences with her.
He submitted his perspective in a signed statement to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Senator Hatch, who is a member of the committee, publicly released excerpts from Ketterer’s statement on Twitter.
“Julie told me that she liked to have sex with more than one guy at a time. … I asked her if this was just a fantasy of hers. She responded that she first tried sex with multiple guys while in high school and still liked it from time-to-time.
“Julie never said anything about being sexually assaulted, raped, gang-raped or having sex against her will. She never mentioned Brett Kavanaugh in any capacity.”
Ketterer speaks to KSL
KSL’s Dave & Dujanovic invited Ketterer onto the show to speak about the situation.
On the show, Ketterer said he’d come forward because he “had to do the right thing.” He said his conscience and the encouragement of his wife and church leaders drove him to share his statement.
When Dave & Dujanovic pushed him to provide evidence that could back up his story, Ketterer said “I guess I can’t prove that specific incidence.”
“Nobody knew what I was doing,” he said, explaining that his relationship with Swetnick had been an extra-martial affair carried out in secret. “There are no pictures, there are no restaurant receipts, because we didn’t go to one.”
Still, Ketterer said he had what he called “background evidence” proving he and Swetnick shared a relationship. He said he has not yet made this proof public over concern it might draw other people into the controversy.
Avenatti snaps back
KSL Newsradio also contacted Michael Avenatti for a response to Ketterer’s story. Avenatti declined an interview but instead provided the statement above, threatening to sue Ketterer for defamation.
Avenatti had previously criticized Ketterer on Twitter, demanding the FBI look into his statements.
The letter from Dennis Ketterer is garbage – the GOP is desperate. The allegations he makes are false and without any basis. We demand that the FBI interview my client & him, and that anyone found to have submitted false info be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) October 2, 2018
Ketterer said he believes Avenatti is trying to “bully” him. He said he would welcome an FBI review.
More to the story
Listen to what Dave & Dujanovic’s full interview with Dennis Ketterer on the Dave & Dujanovic podcast.
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