Related topics

The Latest: Ex-aide says ex-lawmaker initiated flirty texts

February 23, 2018

FILE - In this March 4, 2015 file photo, Arizona House Majority Leader Steve Montenegro, R-Avondale, speaks during a legislative session at the Arizona Capitol in Phoenix. Two former Republican Arizona lawmakers who are leading candidates to fill a vacant U.S. House seat are embroiled in controversy as Tuesday's special primary election looms. Former state Sen. Steve Montenegro reportedly received racy text messages from a Senate staffer who isn't his wife. Former state Sen. Debbie Lesko is under fire for transferring $50,000 from her old state Senate campaign fund to an independent group backing her congressional election bid. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

PHOENIX (AP) — The Latest on the report of sexually inappropriate texts between Arizona congressional candidate and ex-aide (all times local):

5:15 p.m.

A former digital media coordinator for Arizona Senate Republicans has identified herself as an aide who exchanged sexually suggestive texts with ex-Sen. Steve Montenegro.

Stephanie Holford issued a statement Thursday afternoon through her attorney, Tom Ryan.

Holford says their messages were professional when she started working for the Arizona Senate Republican Caucus last year.

But she expressed regret that they became flirtatious to the point where she felt comfortable sending pictures of herself in “various states of undress.”

She says an ex-boyfriend took photos and messages off her computer in a case of “revenge porn.”

Montenegro, who is married, resigned his position to run a Republican special primary election for U.S. Rep. Trent Franks’ seat.

He told the Washington Examiner that he didn’t solicit a topless photo and he never had an inappropriate relationship with her.


12:54 p.m.

An attorney for a woman says she has left her Arizona Senate job and believes she was a victim of revenge porn in the wake of reports that she exchanged suggestive text messages with current congressional candidate and ex-legislator Steve Montenegro.

Attorney Tom Ryan told the Arizona Capitol Times that the woman’s ex-boyfriend stole material from his client’s home computer and widely distributed the material.

Ryan wouldn’t discuss the identities of the woman or her ex-boyfriend but says she voluntarily left her job Wednesday in the wake of news reports of the texts, which included a topless photo of the woman.

Montenegro has denounced the reports as “tabloid trash.”

He is running in a Republican special primary election for the 8th Congressional District seat.

Update hourly