Johnson County Republican Chairman Fabian Shepard has been accused of forcibly kissing a Wyandotte County GOP official against her will outside a political event on Aug. 20, according to a report on file with the Bonner Springs Police Department.
Shepard has not replied to multiple requests for comment from the Shawnee Mission Post made via phone, email and text over the past 48 hours.
In the police report, the name of the reporting party was redacted, but a column published Sunday by the Kansas City Star editorial board identified her as Stephanie Cashion, vice chair of the Wyandotte County Republicans. The column reported that the event at which the alleged encounter occurred was an anti-abortion rally.
Social media posts from Johnson County Republicans that began circulating late last week also named Cashion as the recipient of unwanted advances from Shepard.
The police report
According to Bonner Springs police, the incident happened at about 8:15 p.m. outside The Farms of Woodend Springs in Bonner Springs, where an event was in progress.
Shepard allegedly invited the woman to follow him to the east side of the building, and as they walked around the corner grabbed her by the back of the neck and kissed her on the mouth against her will, the report said.
Afterwards, Shepard allegedly asked if he was a “bad kisser” and then went for a second and then a third kiss. He was pushed away and the two went back inside, the report said.
The allegation of battery was reported Sunday.
A release from the police department that accompanied the report noted that the reporting party requested the incident be documented while she considered her options. The department then created a criminal report.
An officer contacted the venue but there was no security footage of the area in question, the report said.
The Post could not locate contact information to reach Cashion.
Shepard has so far not responded to the Post’s requests for comment sent via voice message, text and email.
But the Star editorial board did report that Shepard denied Cashion’s allegations, saying she kissed him on the cheek.
State Republican Chairman Mike Kuckelman released a statement Monday about the incident:
“The Kansas Republican Party takes the allegations very seriously,” it said. “The alleged assault did not occur at a party function and the individuals involved are not state party staff. When I was advised of the allegations, I immediately reached out to Ms. Cashion as well as the accused and individuals that were in the vicinity and might be witnesses. I was advised the matter was being reported to law enforcement and Ms. Cashion requested that I not get further involved and I have respected her request. At this point, it is important that everyone permit law enforcement to conduct its investigation without interference.”