Second Woman Accusing Herbster of Assault Identifies Herself

May 1, 2022, 6 a.m. ·

Charles Herbster speaks at Nebraska Public Media debate in March 2022
Charles Herbster answers a question during a Nebraska Public Media debate on March 24, 2022. (Photo by Chris Holtmeier for Nebraska Public Media)

A second woman who has accused gubernatorial candidate Charles Herbster of groping her has identified herself publicly.

Elizabeth Todsen, a former legislative assistant, says she is one of the eight women who accused Herbster of sexual assault. The non-profit news organization Nebraska Examiner first reported the allegations in an article published on April 14.

Up until now, the only woman who identified herself publicly has been State Senator Julie Slama. Slama accused Herbster of putting his hand up her dress at a political event in 2019.

In a statement sent to news organizations by her lawyer, including Nebraska Public Media News, Todsen says she was groped by Herbster at that same event.

Below is her entire statement:

Statement of Elizabeth Todsen

For years I have struggled with an experience I had with Charles W. Herbster. At a political event in 2019, Herbster sexually groped me while greeting my table. This was the same night that Herbster aggressively grabbed Senator Julie Slama.

My experience with Charles W. Herbster was thoroughly described by the Nebraska Examiner in two articles, one on April 14 and another on April 19 by a witness’s account.

This decision to come forward with my story has been extremely difficult due to my fear of repercussions from Charles W. Herbster, a powerful voice in Nebraska politics. But after thinking about this for years now, I know that it is time that Nebraskans know about the horrible actions made by Charles W. Herbster.

I also want to say that I am extremely proud of Senator Slama for sharing her story. She has been a brave and strong role model for all women.

Herbster has denied all the allegations, and has filed a defamation lawsuit against Slama. Slama then filed a countersuit against Herbster.

In a statement issued by a campaign spokesperson, Herbster says the statement by Todsen is part of a political attack aimed at derailing his gubernatorial campaign. In the statement, Herbster says he will take legal action against others involved in the accusations.

Below is the statement issued by Herbster's campaign:


Omaha, NE – Charles W. Herbster absolutely and unequivocally denies all allegations.

As an honoree that night, Charles sat at a table in the front center of the room in full view of more than 500 guests. Charles was accompanied by his Executive Assistant and others the entire evening. 

Just 10 days before the Republican Primary for Governor, Charles W. Herbster’s political opponents with ties to Governor Ricketts have launched this disgusting smear attack on him. These are the desperate tactics of a failing political campaign meant to compensate for the uninspiring and liberal candidate, Jim Pillen. 

Only one liberal site funded by George Soros, a billionaire Democrat donor, would report on the false allegations.

Charles W. Herbster has already filed legal action against one of the people named in reports and will be taking legal action against the others. He will not stop fighting until his name is cleared and he is vindicated.