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Police officer files harassment, retaliation suit

Women working as police officers in Pennsylvania and around the country sometimes face obstacles in what many consider to be a male-dominated field. A woman in another state is suing her police department for harassment and retaliation, alleging she was subjected to inappropriate behavior by her supervisor.

The woman, an officer in the canine unit, says her supervising sergeant circulated an embarrassing flier in an email that mocked her body. According to the woman's lawsuit, the flier appeared on department letterhead and contained phrases like, "Subject wanted for having the baddest body."

She says the supervisor harassed her many times over a period lasting a year and a half. Among other allegations, she says he would ask her to sit in his lap; asked her to take off a vest; and invited her to his house to go skinny dipping in his hot tub.

According to StlToday.com, the woman's lawsuit also maintains that the supervisor and a lieutenant in the department, who is in charge of the SWAT and canine units, retaliated against her after she filed a complaint in the department last summer. She says they would evaluate her differently in performance reviews, give her unfavorable shifts and deny time off.

The supervisor also allegedly told her that she could be fired or have her police dog taken away if she did not comply with his requests.

In addition to the department, the woman is suing the supervisor, the lieutenant and the Board of Police Commissioners.

Source: StlToday.com, "St. Louis police officer sues, claims sexual harassment," Jennifer Mann, Jan. 10, 2012

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