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9th Circuit docket: Coddling criminal harasser may backfire

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

A jury will get to determine if an employer’s perceived preferential treatment of an alleged rapist created a hostile work environment for the female employee who reported the rape. The ruling came in Fuller v. Department of Corrections, recently heard by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over California employers.

‘Make sure he’s doing OK’

On Aug. 22, 2011, Cynthia, an employee of the Idaho Department of Corrections (IDOC), was raped outside the workplace by a co-worker named Herbt.

Herbt’s workplace conduct had already been the subject of complaints from three other female co-workers, but he had never been disciplined for those incidents. Prior to the assault on Cynthia, IDOC had placed Herbt on administrative leave because he was under criminal investigation for an alleged rape reported a month earlier.

IDOC’s deputy chief directed IDOC’s district manager to maintain contact with H...(register to read more)

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