The 10 biggest sexual harassment lawsuits of 2013 cost the accused organizations and companies over $28 million in lawsuit settlement payments and judgments for monetary damages.
The organizations sued for sexual harassment in 2013 include a travel telemarketing company, an investment bank, a hospital, a leading shipment/logistics company, a city police department, and a city fire department.
Here are the largest sexual harassment lawsuits that were concluded in 2013:
- A Florida jury awarded $20 million to eight former female employees of two merged travel telemarketing companies after the jury found that the women were subjected to a sexually hostile work environment. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed the sexual harassment lawsuit against Four Amigos Travel and Top Dog Travel on behalf of the eight women.
- In April 2013, an administrative judge awarded $2 million to a female former sergeant at the Rensselaer County jail who was allegedly subjected to years of mental and physical sexual harassment by a group of male coworkers. The woman claims that a coworker, William Fenton, groped her buttocks and breasts. After she complained to Captain Harold Smith about the incident, she claims she was subjected to a hostile work environment in retaliation by her coworkers Timmy Hayes, David Hayes, Jimmy Suriano, Jamie Kozowsil, Joe Bruno, Jay Burns, John Hayes, Mark Piche, David Higgett, and David Connell. The female sergeant eventually quit her job in order to escape the hostile work environment, and a state board found that she suffered post-traumatic stress and depression.
- A California jury awarded a woman $1.5 million after it found that she was sexually harassed by Oceanside Police Officer Gilbert Garcia. The woman worked as a contractor for the Oceanside Police department as a phlebotomist From August 2008 to January 2010.
- The City of Los Angeles agreed to pay $1.25 million to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit that was filed against it by two lesbian LAPD officers. The two officers claim their boss, Sgt . Randy Hoffmaster, subjected them to a sexually hostile work environment by making unwanted sexual propositions to them and by making vulgar sexual comments to them.
- In 2010, a California jury awarded a former employee of The 101 Casino in Petaluma more than $2 million after it found that she was sexually harassed by her boss, Bill Bundesen, and Randy Yaple. A judge later lowered her award to $1.2 million. The woman claims that Bundesen made unwanted sexual comments to her and then began disciplining her for minor or fabricated issues after she complained to the HR department.
- A jury awarded three women $1 million in a sexual harassment lawsuit that was filed against Alabama State University. The three former university employees claim that they were subjected to a racially and sexually hostile work environment by John F. Knight Jr., the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Alabama State University and an Alabama state legislator as well as Lavonette Bartley.
- Ohio’s Orange Township agreed to pay $875,000 to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit that was filed against the township by a former firefighter who claimed that she was subjected to sexual harassment and then fired because she is a woman. The woman will also get her old job back.
- The Illinois Town of Cicero agreed to pay $675,000 to a former police officer and another woman to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit that accused Town President Larry Dominick of sexually harassing them. According to the complaint, Dominick made sexually explicit comments to one of the women “on a constant basis.” She also claims that Dominick touched her breasts.
- New York City agreed to pay $600,000 to four female guards at Rikers Island Jail to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit that the women had filed against the city. The women claim they were sexually harassed by male supervisors such as deputy warden Raphael Olivo.
- In March, 2013, a federal judge reduced the $3.5 million jury award in a sexual harassment lawsuit that a former lifeguard at the Takoma Aquatic Center had filed. The judge reduced the award to $350,000. The woman claims that she was sexually harassed by her then supervisor, Rodney Weaver, and that the D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation did not take action to stop the harassment after she complained to six different district supervisors.