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State AG Office embroiled in sex scandal

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Employment Law,Human Resources

Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann has placed Anthony Gutierrez, his office’s director of general services, on leave during an investigation of sexual harassment complaints by staff members Vanessa Stout and Cindy Stankoski.

The women worked in Dann’s telecommunications office, which Gutierrez supervised. They allege Gutierrez persistently harassed them, touching them and pressuring them to have sex. They say Gutierrez told them “You owe me” in reference to getting them state jobs.

Stankoski filed criminal harassment charges following a September 2007 incident in which she alleges that Gutierrez pressured her into going out for drinks. They wound up at a Dublin condominium, where Stankoski says she fell asleep drunk. When she awoke hours later, her pants were undone and Gutierrez was lying next to her in his underwear. At the time, Gutierrez, Dann and Leo Jennings III, Dann’s communications director, were roommates at the condo. Stankoski alleges Dann was in the condominium that night.

Jennings has not been accused of harassment, but was also placed on leave during the investigation. Dann has recused himself from the investigation due to his ties to Gutierrez and the apartment.

Stout and Stankoski have filed EEOC complaints. They told reporters the state’s EEO representative to Dann’s office acknowledged a problem and told them the office would do anything they wanted to resolve the matter quietly.

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