Democratic nominee's accuser: 'I thought this was over'

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - As if a pending felony charge and a state party asking for his withdrawal isn't enough, now South Carolina's surprise nominee will likely have to hear the words of his accuser throughout the campaign season.

Wednesday night, a student at the University of South Carolina spoke out for the first time about the alleged incident that led to Greene's arrest.

According to her, "I thought this was over and this man, this guy, decides he's going to run for Senate and it all comes back - it's not fair to me."

Court records show 32-year-old Alvin Greene was arrested in November and charged with showing obscene Internet photos to the USC student.

Charged with disseminating, procuring or promoting obscenity, Greene could face up to five years in prison. He has yet to enter a plea or be indicted, and neither Greene's attorney nor a woman listed as the victim immediately returned messages.

According to the police report, the incident happened on the University of South Carolina campus in a computer lab in the Bates House. The police report indicates Greene was rejected once by the woman and then showed photos to a woman and talked about going to her room at a university dorm.

[Read Greene's arrest warrant]

Greene was using an old copy of his on-campus identification card to gain access to the building and the computer lab. Police told staff members after the incident to prevent Greene from re-entering the building.

South Carolina Democratic Party Chair Carol Fowler asked Alvin Greene to withdraw from the race for US Senate.

"Today I spoke with Alvin Greene, the presumptive Democratic nominee for the US Senate, and asked him to withdraw from the race. I did not do this lightly, as I believe strongly that the Democratic voters of this state have the right to select our nominee.  But this new information about Mr. Greene has would certainly have affected the decisions of many of those voters," said Fowler.

Fowler said Greene did not reflect the values of the state's constituents.

"Our candidates want to give this state a new beginning without the drama and irresponsibility of the past 8 years, and the charges against Mr. Greene indicate that he cannot contribute to that new beginning.  I hope he will see the wisdom of leaving the race," said Fowler.

Fowler told POLITICO the party was seeking legal counsel to seek out possible avenues to remove Greene in the event he does not withdraw.

Greene said he had no comment when asked about the charge Wednesday and hung up on a reporter. Later he said he would not step aside.

"The Democratic Party has chosen their nominee, and we have to stand behind their choice," Greene told the AP at his home in Manning. "The people have spoken. We need to be pro-South Carolina, not anti-Greene."

The primary victor posted bond after his arrest. He has yet to enter a plea or be indicted.

South Carolina state law prohibits convicted felons from serving in state office. Felons can serve in federal office, although the U.S. House or Senate could vote to expel any member deemed unfit to serve.

Rawl said he didn't know about Greene's arrest until reading media reports about it.

"It's an absolute surprise," said Rawl, who scrapped a late-week fundraiser after the loss. "I can't really make any comments, because I don't know what's going on."

His prior arrest aside, questions abounded in the day-after deconstruction of Greene's win.

Had Rawl been a victim of the anti-incumbent sentiment that swept the state's primaries? He only carried four counties, but one was Charleston, where he currently serves on county council.

Did Greene capitalize on some sort of a movement among either black voters or the unemployed? A subset of the Machinists' union ran cable ads in South Carolina encouraging the state's jobless to vote, but the group says it never promoted directly Greene or mentioned his name. The director of the state's NAACP chapter says he knew nothing about Greene, who is black, before the win.

There was so little known about Greene's race, background or employment history that it would be hard to believe any of those factors played a role.

It certainly was not his communication skills: Greene spent the better part of an hour Wednesday morning repeatedly putting a reporter on hold before hanging up after the mention of his arrest.

However, in a brief interview with ABC News, Greene said he was involuntarily forced out of the Army because "things just weren't working ... it was hard to say."

Greene's win may come down the simple fact that his name was listed before Rawl's on the alphabetized ballot, a possibility Fowler said she pondered Tuesday night. Now, Fowler is trying to rework general election schematics that had assumed Rawl would ultimately face off with DeMint.

Even if Rawl had been successful, one analyst expressed skepticism it would have made a difference against the juggernaut of DeMint, a tea party darling who has marshaled a $3.5 million war chest already in the pursuit of his second term.

"A lot of it speaks to the lack of depth of the bench for the Democratic Party in South Carolina right now," said Scott Huffmon, a political scientist at Winthrop University. "Their best shot in November, really, is the Governor's Mansion."

Greene was expected to lose handily to Rawl, who crisscrossed the state and raised $160,000 in campaign funds, in the primary, but inexplicably -- even to party leadership -- he pulled a sizable majority.

Now, Greene faces Jim DeMint and again, he is expected to be trounced by the more notable politician. He has already said he would need the financial backing of the state and national Democratic party to make a good run. However, with the state party chair asking him to step down, it is unclear if Greene will see any financial assistance.

He may, if these obscenity charges don't stick, be running another no frills campaign.

Anthony Miller contributed to this report.

Copyright 2010 WCSC. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.