A Republican campaign staffer who did work for Virginia U.S. Senate candidate Corey Stewart claims a New York Times reporter entered his apartment while he was away. But the Times says the reporter never took a step inside.
Brian Landrum said he left the front door of his Woodbridge apartment unlocked on Wednesday as a friend was inside. His friend came face-to-face with an intruder about 2 p.m., Landrum said.
“Walking out of the bathroom taking a right, hearing something, she turned around and Stephanie was standing right [there]" Landrum told News4 on Thursday.
But The New York Times says its reporter, Stephanie Saul, never entered the apartment.
"Ms. Saul went to an address for Landrum Associates in Woodbridge looking for Mr. Landrum. She was told by a woman who opened the door that he was not present. She left a note with the woman for Mr. Landrum asking him to call. At no time did she enter the premises," a Times spokeswoman said in an email to News4.
Landrum said Saul left a note and then walked in uninvited.
“I had had absolutely no heads up that she even had any interest in speaking with me, until she decided to break into my apartment," Landrum said.
The Prince William County Police Department confirmed police responded to an apartment in that same area of Woodbridge for a report of a break-in, but they declined to say whether it was Landrum's apartment.
"We do not provide information which will confirm the identify of a victim in our investigations and we do not identify suspects unless they have been formally charged or are wanted on an active warrant," the department said in a statement. "The matter is still under investigation and no charges have been placed at this time."
Stewart, a conservative provocateur and diehard supporter of President Donald Trump, put out a statement to the media on Thursday blasting the Times.
"The fake news media will stop at nothing to destroy Republicans, as we've seen with their coverage of President Trump and others over the last few years," Stewart said. "Far left media from New York to Richmond have been working overtime to invent wild stories to try to give advantage to Tim Kaine, and now they're breaking into our team's homes in pursuit of their narrative."