Sexual harassment scandals in politics are some of the most notoriously covered by the media. In a recent case, California House candidate Carl DeMaio has been accused of sexual harassment by a former staffer. Making matters worse, the former policy director claims the politician attempted bribery and made repeated advances for sexual contact. The Republican candidate is openly gay and is in a tight race against Scott Peters, but has gained national support and attention for his decision to drop social issues from the party platform. Despite his growing notoriety and place as a “rising star” in the Republican party, the candidate could suffer a huge blow to his campaign as a result of the sexual harassment allegations.
According to reports, DeMaio repeatedly sexually harassed his staffer by grabbing his crotch and “masturbating in front of him” while in his office. DeMaio vehemently denies the allegations. He describes the staffer as a disgruntled ex-employee who was fired for plagiarizing documents for the website. DeMaio has also accused the staffer of breaking into the campaign office and committing property damage – a case that also drew national headlines.
In this highly-publicized dispute, sexual harassment allegations could result in a significant settlement or jury verdict if the plaintiff is successful in litigation.
According to the staffer, when he brought the allegations of sexual harassment to the campaign manager, the incident was “laughed off” and the staffer was fired and then offered $50,000 to sign a non-disclosure agreement. According to other reports, DeMaio has been accused of masturbating in a public bathroom, though he has flatly denied the charges. The campaign manager and DeMaio continue to deny the allegations of sexual harassment, though it is likely that the case will be damaging politically. It could also prove costly to settle.
In the event of sexual harassment, victims are often forced to confront their aggressors and take legal action. If you have suffered from sexual harassment in the workplace, you should consult with an experienced legal advocate to determine the best course of action to protect your rights. Whether you are concerned about protecting your job, discretion, or how much your case is worth, an experienced attorney can evaluate your claims and explore your rights. Our Orange County employment attorneys are experienced in representing individuals who have suffered from sexual harassment in the workplace. We will pursue all available avenues of relief to achieve justice and protect your rights.
Sexual harassment may come in the form of a “quid pro quo” offer for sexual favors or an exchange in the form of a benefit or to protect your job. Repeated sexual harassment may also create a hostile work environment. Jokes, sexual innuendos, inappropriate emails or exchanges, sexual advances, and other forms of sexual harassment by a manager, co-worker, or even a client could be considered unlawful sexual harassment. Our law firm will launch an immediate and thorough investigation to collect and preserve evidence, counsel you on the proper course of legal action, and advocate for the best possible outcome on your behalf.
Costa Mesa employment lawsuits can be filed with assistance from the Nassiri Law Group, practicing in Los Angeles, Riverside, and Orange County. Call 949.375.4734.
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