Ex-Trump campaign aide alleges intimidation, undermining

A former Trump campaign official who previously sued to break her non-disclosure agreement is speaking out about an alleged workplace “reign of terror.”

Jessica Denson, who was hired in August 2016 as a phone bank administrator and then promoted to serve as the Hispanic engagement director of the campaign, claimed in an interview Friday that Camilo Sandoval, the former acting chief information officer at the Department of Veterans Affairs Camilo, harassed her to undermine her success. 

“He could not stand that a woman who he had hired essentially to be a prop in his data department got a meaningful promotion and was demonstrating her value and he launched an all-out assault on my character, he tried to steal my personal laptop, he tried to engage other staffers in this theft and hacking of my devices,” she told CNN.

However, when Denson approached campaign officials for help, she said they “completely retaliated against me,” taking away her work and banning her from Trump Tower.

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PALM BEACH, FL - MARCH 11: Corey Lewandowski campaign manager for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks with the media before former presidential candidate Ben Carson gives his endorsement to Mr. Trump at the Mar-A-Lago Club on March 11, 2016 in Palm Beach, Florida. Presidential candidates continue to campaign before Florida's March 15th primary day. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Donald Trump, president and chief executive of Trump Organization Inc. and 2016 Republican presidential candidate, center, pauses while speaking during a news conference with his son Eric Trump, right, and Corey Lewandowski, campaign manager for Trump, left, at the Mar-A-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., on Tuesday, March 15, 2016. Billionaire Trump fell short of his goal of winning the two key states he needed to clear most of the Republican presidential field, securing a huge victory in Florida to knock out Senator Marco Rubio while losing Ohio to Governor John Kasich. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Corey Lewandowski, campaign manager for 2016 Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, speaks to members of the media before a news conference at the Mar-A-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., on Friday, March 11, 2016. Ben Carson, who recently ended his quest for Republican presidential nomination, endorsed his onetime rival Donald Trump Friday striking a blow to presidential candidate Senator Ted Cruz, who had courted Carson because they appeal to many of the same religious-minded voters. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Corey Lewandowski, campaign manager for Donald Trump's 2016 Republican presidential campaign, speaks on the telephone while at his desk inside the Trump campaign headquarters located in Trump Tower in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015. The billionaire front-runner for the Republican nomination continues his momentum this fall by preparing media ads and holding public appearance throughout the country. Photographer: Ali Elkin/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign manager Corey Lewandowski (C) is seen allegedly grabbing the arm of reporter Michelle Fields in this still frame from video taken March 8, 2016 and released by the Jupiter (Florida) Police Department March 29, 2016. Lewandowski, 42, was arrested in Florida on Tuesday and charged with battery, police records show. REUTERS/Jupiter Police Department/Handout via Reuters THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS
Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign manager Corey Lewandowski (C) is seen allegedly grabbing the arm of reporter Michelle Fields in this still frame from video taken March 8, 2016 and released by the Jupiter (Florida) Police Department March 29, 2016. Lewandowski, 42, was arrested in Florida on Tuesday and charged with battery, police records show. REUTERS/Jupiter Police Department/Handout via Reuters FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS
Corey Lewandowski (R) campaign manager for Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump (C) reaches between Trump and a U.S. Secret Service agent (2nd R) towards Breitbart News reporter Michelle Fields (L) after a news conference held at Trump's National Golf Club in Jupiter, Florida, March 8, 2016. Lewandowski, 42, was arrested in Florida on Tuesday and charged with battery for his interaction with Fields at the event, police records show. Picture taken March 8, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Skipper/Files TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
JUPITER, FLORIDA - MARCH 29: A police car sits outside the police department on March 29, 2016 in Jupiter, Florida. Donald Trump's campaign manager Corey Lewandowski has been charged with simple battery after allegedly grabbing a reporter by the arm at a campaign event. (Photo by Mychal Watts/Getty Images)
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She’s since been told that her subsequent November 2017 lawsuit violated the NDA she signed.

Denson spoke of her decision to sign the agreement with regret, recalling being “eager and anxious to protect” then-candidate Trump “from all of the attacks.”

Last year, Politico reported that Denson’s $25 million lawsuit alleged that Sandoval attempted to intimidate her, warning her after her promotion by campaign CEO Steve Bannon that, “I hired you and I can fire you.”

NDAs blocking workers from speaking out about their experiences in both the campaign and the administration have become routine. According to the Daily Beast, this year’s White House interns have already signed them, being cautioned by the counsel’s office that any blabbing could be punished with legal and financial consequences.

Denson argued that in reality, NDAs enable officials to feel “like they could act with impunity and engage in illegal conduct and it would never see the light of day.”

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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