San Diego police detective alleges sexual harassment in lawsuit

Frank S. Clowney III

Being a police officer in California is a challenging career under any set of circumstances. Police must depend on the support of their fellow officers in order to do their jobs safely and effectively. But should an officer be subjected to a hostile work environment, his or her life and career could become very painful to manage.

A former San Diego homicide detective believes she was on the receiving end of gender discrimination and sexual harassment, among other charges, during the time she served on the department’s homicide unit. She is currently filing suit against the San Diego Police Department, the City of San Diego and several individuals from the unit in which she served.

According to the lawsuit, the female detective was subjected to hostile treatment from other detectives. She claims the detectives would impede her efforts to do her job by not communicating important information and even disconnecting her phone.

The female detective says that her attempts to talk to some of her male counterparts received demeaning and inappropriate responses. Further, when expressing her concern about the situation to one detective, she says she was cut off and told that she was not liked. These other detectives are also named in the suit.

She describes the unit as being an old boy’s network where she was outside the loop and thus made the subject of bullying and unfair treatment. Sources report that the female detective is still employed with the department, though she is not working in the same unit.

The assertions against some of the members of the homicide unit of the department are extremely serious. These men are tasked with duty to uphold the law, yet the acts of which they are accused are very much illegal. Sexual harassment and discrimination based on gender is expressly forbidden under The Fair Employment and Housing Act.

The negative impact that harassment and discrimination can have on a person’s personal and professional well-being cannot be understated. Should you be in a situation where you are being compromised in such a manner, you may consider discussing your situation with a California attorney who has insight on how to resolve such issues.

Source: ABC10, “Female detective files lawsuit against San Diego Police Department,” Melissa Mecija, May 2, 2014