According to the Seattle Times, a former Mercer Island Deputy City Manager has agreed to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit with her former employer. Londi Lindell will receive $1 million in settlement in which she claimed she was a victim of sexual harassment and was fired in an act of retaliation.
The settlement comes after a federal judge ruled that the city of Mercer Island must pay $90,560 in penalties for withholding public records from Lindell. Lindell said that she very much looks forward to closing that chapter and moving on with the next chapter, which would be finding a fulfilling job in either management or municipal law. She has been unemployed since City Manager Rich Conrad terminated her employment in 2008 after she took issue with his handling of a disciplinary matter involving the city’s human-resources director’s husband.
Lindell’s lawsuit alleged that the City Council member Ernest Jahncke commented on her body and told her a manager’s retreat would be a grab assin’. She continued to allege inappropriate behavior by city officials and employees, including joking both in public settings and via email about body parts and pubic hair. Lindell outlined types of sexual harassment in court documents, including:
A sexual proposition Conrad admitted making in 2002 to a female subordinate on an out-of-town trip. The employee, who said Conrad continued to pursue her, later resigned and received a $90,000 settlement.
- Warnings in 2008 from a former city attorney and an outside investigator that Conrad put the city in legal danger when he followed Human Resources Director Kryss Segle’s advice that he not formally discipline her husband for an off-color joke.
- Officials joking about Segle’s worry that she had inadvertently exposed herself to a police officer during an exit interview when she was wearing a skirt but no underwear.
- City Attorney Katie Knight sending pictures to Segle of a scantily clad woman on a desk with her legs over her head and the comment, “Maybe this is how you should conduct your exit interviews.”
Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob – Los Angeles employment attorney