The Concord City Council voted to pay $750,000 to settle a lawsuit claiming sexual harassment filed by a former police officer, under one condition. The condition being that her lawyer never files a suit against the city again.
The city’s insurance will be covering the payment of $250,000 to former police officer Lisa Capocci and $500,000 in legal fees. Capocci’s attorney said that the settlement vindicates the victim after more than a year of legal wrangling in the pursuit of justice.
He went on to say “No matter how the city wants to spin this, no defendant pays this kind of money if they are really confident that the department treated Lisa Capocci fairly.”
Capocci’s lawsuit alleged that one of her supervisors made inappropriate sexual advances towards her. When she complained then-Cpl. Michael Hansen and his colleagues retaliated by filing several groundless internal affairs investigations against her. Capocci also complained that other officers were slow to back her up on calls thus putting her life in danger.
Capocci continued to work in the department a year after filing the suit, until she was stripped of her position as a K-9 officer. At that time she was no longer able to tolerate the hostile work environment and quit.
The city claims that the department not only treated Capocci fairly, and investigated the complaints she made, they also disciplined Hansen. Yet the huge amount of money the city is willing to pay to make this go away tells another story. They may have drug this out for nearly 2 years, but in the end the city was unwilling to go to court in the matter.