Murdered MP's widower Brendan Cox quits charities

Brendan Cox

The husband of murdered MP Jo Cox, Brendan Cox, has quit two charities he set up in her memory after allegations of sexual assault were made public.

Mr Cox denied assaulting a woman in her 30s at Harvard University in 2015 – but admitted to “inappropriate” behaviour while working for Save the Children.

He has left posts at More in Common and the Jo Cox Foundation a week after the Mail on Sunday published the claims.

Mr Cox apologised for the “hurt and offence” caused by his past behaviour.

In a statement issued on Saturday, he said: “While I do not accept the allegations contained in the 2015 complaint to the police in Cambridge, Massachusetts, I do acknowledge and understand that during my time at Save the Children I made mistakes.”

Mr Cox, who married Jo Cox in 2009, was reported to police in Massachusetts in the US in 2015 for “inappropriate touching” while on a trip to Harvard – a claim which he denies.

The father-of-two said some of the allegations against him were a “massive exaggeration”, but conceded that he had at times “overstepped the line”.

Details of Mr Cox’s alleged behaviour at Save the Children, which he left in 2015, emerged after Oxfam issued its own apology over a sex scandal involving aid workers in Haiti.

‘Dedication’ to charity

Labour MP Mrs Cox was fatally shot and stabbed outside her constituency office in West Yorkshire by a far-right extremist during the EU Referendum campaign in 2016.

Mr Cox said it had become “much more difficult” to focus on the two charities he set up after his wife’s death, the community group More in Common and the Jo Cox Foundation.

“For that reason, while away over half term, I decided to step down from my current public roles for the time being,” he said.

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Brendan Cox

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Labour MP Jo Cox died after being attacked in her West Yorkshire constituency

He added: “In the past I have focused on disputing what I felt was untrue in the allegations, but I realise now that it’s more important to take full responsibility for what I have done.”

A spokesperson for the Jo Cox Foundation said the charity “admired” Mr Cox’s contribution as a trustee.

“The trustees and staff have admired the integrity, commitment and dedication that Brendan has shown in our work to create a positive legacy for Jo,” they said.

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