Ex-legislator: ‘I apologize for making women feel uncomfortable'

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POUGHKEEPSIE -

A Dutchess County legislator who resigned last month following sexual harassment allegations is speaking exclusively to News 12 Monday night about the scandal that forced him to step down.       

"I apologize for making women feel uncomfortable. I'm humiliated,” says former Dutchess County Legislator Joel Tyner.

Tyner broke his silence in the exclusive News 12 interview, apologizing Monday after a sexual harassment scandal cost the longtime politician his job and threatened his marriage.

MORE: Several women accuse ex-Dutchess legislator of sexual harassment, assault 

"It was inappropriate. It was not a good example for anyone - today's youth or anyone,” he says.

Tyner stepped down last month after several women came forward alleging they received unwanted, sexually charged online messages from the legislator, including some obtained by News 12 where Tyner calls one woman "sexy" and "hot," and asks another to "runaway" with him while his wife is out of town.

"I've apologized to my wife. We're back together. We're working things out. I felt neglected but that's no excuse,” he says.

Tyner's pregnant wife had originally filed for divorce once the scandal broke, including allegations of attempting to solicit sex from an underage girl in the ‘80s and sexually assaulting a former fiancee.

Despite the public accusations, no criminal charges have been filed. Tyner, who maintains his innocence, says he's been sabotaged.

Tyner says the allegations have ended his political career and landed him on paid administrative leave from his job in the Hudson City School District. He says he's now considering filing a defamation lawsuit.

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