The House ethics committee is opening an urgent investigation of whether Rep. Donald E. Lukens, R-Ohio, made improper sexual advances toward a Capitol employee.

Lukens, who was convicted in Ohio last year of a misdemeanor sex offense, was ordered to testify under oath Tuesday about the new allegation."The committee has received additional evidence indicating that Rep. Lukens may have made unwanted and unsolicited sexual advances to a congressional employee," the committee said in a statement issued Monday evening.

Sources close to the case said Lukens recently fondled and propositioned a young elevator operator in the Capitol and gave her his business card. She reported the incident to her supervisors, and one source said there was a witness to corroborate her story.