The governor’s inner circle was in a frenzy: A former state employee had just publicly accused Andrew M. Cuomo of a yearslong sexual harassment campaign against her.
The group huddled in the State Capitol office of Melissa DeRosa, the governor’s top aide, and launched an effort to discredit the woman, Lindsey Boylan, collecting a box of personnel files filled with sensitive information that they thought would undermine her credibility.
Before they could leak the files to reporters, some names had to be removed. One of the governor’s senior advisers hunted for Wite-Out with the help of an executive assistant — a woman who would later accuse Mr. Cuomo of groping her breast in the Executive Mansion.
That episode in December was just one of many described in a damaging report from the New York State attorney general this week, which not only found that Mr. Cuomo sexually harassed 11 women, but that a cadre of his top aides and associates engaged in unlawful retaliation against one of the women — retaliation that frightened others into maintaining their silence.