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Two lesbian LAPD officers awarded $1.25 million following allegations of sexual harassment

Openly gay Los Angeles Police Department officers Linda Gotham and Lynn Whitey, who were both assigned to the Van Nuys division of the L.A.P.D.  claimed that on several occasions, their supervisor Sergeant Randy Hoffmaster made vulgar sexual comments and propositions.  These allegations were followed by a lawsuit and investigation resulting in $1.25 million payout to avoid a trial. In addition, Sergeant Randy Hoffmaster has reportedly resigned.

Along with the findings of the Los Angeles Police Department’s investigation, the women’s claims were supported by other officers who witnessed the abuse and who were prepared to testify on their behalf.

The failure of department heads to address the women’s complaints until after a lawsuit was filed underscores an ongoing struggle within the Los Angeles Police Department. Top police officials and the civilian board that oversees the force have come under increasing pressure to improve the department’s ability to quickly and effectively resolve workplace conflicts before they result in costly litigation.

This agreement is just the latest in a string of large settlements and jury awards the City of Los Angeles has had to pay in cases of discrimination and retaliation that the Los Angeles Police Department officers have brought against each other.

According to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, “Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual’s employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment”.

If you have suffered sexual harassment or any other type of discrimination by your employer, please give my office, The Law Offices of Todd M. Friedman a call at 877-449-8898 for a free consultation.