FILE - In this Jan. 26, 2012 file photo, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas speaks at College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass. Thomas says the Supreme Court confirmation process is an example of how the nation’s capital is “broken in some ways.” Thomas reflected Oct. 26, 2016, on his 25 years as a justice, at the Heritage Foundation, the conservative think tank where his wife once worked. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

In this Jan. 26, 2012 file photo, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas speaks at College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass.  (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — An energy company lawyer says Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas touched her inappropriately at a 1999 dinner in suburban Washington. Thomas denies the allegation.
Lawyer Moira Smith says in a statement she was 23 when “Justice Thomas touched me inappropriately and without my consent.”

Smith was a recent graduate of Georgetown University who was spending the year as a Truman Foundation scholar in Washington.

Two of Smith’s roommates back then confirmed to The Associated Press that Smith told them what happened just after the dinner. Smith didn’t go public until this month.

Thomas says the claim is “preposterous” and “it never happened.”

Smith’s story and Thomas’ denial were first published by Law.com.

Thomas’ high court confirmation in 1991 was nearly derailed by Anita Hill’s claims that Thomas sexually harassed her.

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