GOP Lawmaker Secretly Poured Water in Colleague’s Bag for 5 Months Before Getting Caught on Video: ‘It Was Torment’

"I am truly ashamed for my actions," Mary Morrissey said in a public apology after soaking her Democratic colleague Jim Carroll's belongings on multiple occasions

<p>Vermont General Assembly</p> Jim Carroll, Mary Morrissey.

Vermont General Assembly

Jim Carroll, Mary Morrissey.
  • Vermont lawmaker Mary Morrissey has apologized after she was previously caught pouring water into fellow state Rep. Jim Carroll's bag on multiple occasions

  • "I am truly ashamed for my actions," Morrissey said

  • "For five months, I went through this ... it was torment," Carroll added

A Republican politician from Vermont has apologized to her Democratic colleague after she was caught on camera pouring water into his bag. The bizarre behavior reportedly occurred on several occasions over the course of five months.

Mary Morrissey, 67, and Jim Carroll, 62, are both from Bennington and are members of the Vermont House of Representatives.

On Monday, June 17, Morrissey issued a public apology to her fellow lawmaker after Carroll set up a video camera behind a scarf on the wall to try and catch her in the act after noticing his bag was wet on multiple occasions.

“I am truly ashamed for my actions,” Morrissey said, per the Associated Press, calling her behavior "disrespectful."

She confirmed she had apologized to Carroll and that they were working on “resolution and restoration through out legislative process,” per the outlet.

“For five months, I went through this,” Carroll said during the Vermont state House meeting, adding, “It was torment.”

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Per The Guardian, Morrissey had been pouring water into Carroll's bag since January, despite the pair having known each other since childhood.

“[She] would say demeaning things in front of other legislators,” Carroll told the outlet of his fellow politician's behavior in the workplace.

He eventually secretly recorded Morrissey, and despite her face not being seen in the video, she was identified by her hair, the outlet reported.

Morrissey's apology comes after the Vermont publication Seven Days reported that she could face an ethics investigation after soaking Carroll's belongings, citing multiple sources familiar with the situation.

Earlier this month, Democrat Angela Arsenault told the outlet she had seen a video showing Morrissey leaving her statehouse committee room and pouring a cup of water into Carroll's bag.

"It was jaw-dropping," Arsenault told the outlet. "It was bizarre. Why? That's what I kept saying. Why?"

"It wasn't like 'Oops, I bumped my arm, and some of it spilled on this bag,'" she continued. "There was no way this was inadvertent. It was purposeful."

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Per the AP, Carroll said the soaking got worse after he returned from rehab in February following a driving under the influence charge. At that point, he claimed, it happened almost daily.

“It was relentless,” Carroll said, per the outlet. He said that although the first time he speaks to Morrissey following the incident will be awkward, "we have to start somewhere."

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The footage he recorded of Morrissey, which seemingly shows her pouring water out of a glass and into his bag, was taken on April 23 and 26.

Per The Guardian, Carroll said that Morrissey claimed at first to have "flicked" water on his bag to get rid of a bug. However, she ended up admitting that she didn't know why she chose to soak his things.

"At the end of the meeting, I looked at her and said, 'You know, this has really f----- me up.' There were weeks when I didn’t know who was doing this or why," Carroll told the outlet.

"I walked around this place, paranoid of my fellow legislators, racking my brain trying to think, 'What could I have possibly said or done?' " he added.

As for whether he could forgive her, Carroll said, "I guess I would have to say yes in the spirit of forgiveness — reluctantly. But if I had to be a smartass, I’d say her apology holds about as much water as my canvas bag."

Morrissey didn't immediately respond when contacted by PEOPLE.

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