TRENTON – Gov. Phil Murphy joined other colleagues from the region in urging New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign in the wake of an independent investigation that concluded he had sexually harassed 11 women.

The report issued Tuesday by New York’s attorney general, Letitia James, concluded that Cuomo had violated state and federal laws but left it to other prosecutors to decide whether to pursue the matter. The report also found Cuomo created a hostile work environment for women.

Murphy on Tuesday evening issued a joint statement with Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont and Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee, all of them Democrats, as Cuomo is.

“We are appalled at the findings of the independent investigation by the New York Attorney General,” the governors said. “Gov. Cuomo should resign from office.”

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Cuomo defended his actions, challenged the conclusions of the investigation and has rejected calls to resign. New York state lawmakers in the Democrat-controlled Legislature are discussing impeachment proceedings, a process that could take a few months to complete.

President Joe Biden called on Cuomo to resign, as have the top two Democrats in Congress – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California.

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The statement Murphy issued was joined by the region’s other Democratic governors but not the Republican governors of two of New York’s eastern neighbors, Massachusetts and Vermont.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said Cuomo should step down, saying “I don’t see how he can continue to do his job,” according to the Boston Herald.

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott said that’s up to New York to decide, according to an NBC affiliate. “We hold ourselves to a fairly high standard here in Vermont.”

NJ arrests 31 accused child predators in Operation 24/7

A roundup of 31 men have been accused of sexually exploiting children online, state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced on July 14 while detailing "Operation 24/7."

The suspects “possessed and or distributed videos and images of child sexual abuse, including in many cases videos of young children being raped by adults,” Grewal said.

Chat apps and gaming platforms remain favorite hunting grounds for child predators and even as the pandemic winds down, many children have continued to spend more time online.

State Police received 39% more tips in just the first 6 months of 2021 than they received in the entire year in 2019. The following are suspects charged in "Operation 24/7."

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