As any sexual harassment lawyer in California will tell you, this kind of abuse doesn’t only happen to women. Men are harassed and sexually abused in the workplace as well.
Such is allegedly the case for Baldwin Park Officer Martin Herrera. He claims that his senior, Sgt. Andrew Velebil is guilty of sexually harassing him between 2016 and 2017.
Herrera’s lawsuit was filed on 23 March against Sgt. Velebil as well as the City of Baldwin Park.
Neither Velebil’s lawyer or the City’s Attorney’s Office have been available for comment yet.
According to the lawsuit, Herrera was exposed to unsolicited conversations in the locker room of the police station. He was naked during these conversations.
It was during these awkward conversations that Herrera claims the Sergeant would look at his private parts intensely. He added that he felt like he was obligated to speak despite not feeling comfortable.
Furthermore, it is claimed that Velebil has stalked Herrera and asked him out on dates. This is despite Herrera making it clear that he isn’t interested.
The Incident In November
According to the lawsuit, on 25 November 2017, the Sergeant called Herrera for back up at a traffic stop.
When he arrived and got out of his patrol vehicle, Herrera was pinned against it and cursed at by Velebil.
Later that night, he was threatened by the Sergeant, who said he would discipline him for other problems that he did not handle properly.
Herrera Made Reports In The Past
The police officer has reported the incidents to his superiors in November of 2017 and January of 2018. However, he says the higher-ups turned a blind eye to what was happening.
In November of 2019, the department’s supervisors stated that his complaints were unfounded.
Herrera further says that the supervisors got back at him by preventing him from responding to call-outs or using a shotgun.
They allegedly also gave him overly busy shifts and denied him a place in the SWAT team. He insists that he is more qualified for a place in the team than other officers.
Herrera’s Reason For Filing The Lawsuit
As if suffering sexual harassment is not enough reason for a lawsuit, Herrera said he could not just do nothing.
The officer says he had to do something, but not only for himself. He wanted to do it for the community so they can see how officers are being treated.
Herrera just wants Velebil to leave him alone and be given equal opportunities. If the police department does not respond positively, he will seek monetary damages as well.
Not The City’s First Lawsuit
This is not the first time that Baldwin Park has seen the inside of a court. In fact, in the last seven years, two police chiefs have sued the city.
One of them won his gender discrimination case and received $7 million.
According to Baldwin Park’s current Police Chief, the city’s officials are corrupt. According to Police Chief Steve McLean, the mayor asked that his ‘crones’ be promoted.
What To Do If You’re A Sexual Assault Or Harassment Victim
It seems Hollywood and surrounding areas of California are heating up with these types of cases. Fox News anchors were accused of abusing a guest in a sexual manner, in which case the victim booked at attorney, rumored to be an Orange County Sexual Harassment Lawyer. The lawyer will help you get justice and let the world see what has been happening behind closed doors.
Sexual harassment is a serious crime and should not go unpunished. Let your voice be heard with the support and experience of a sexual harassment Lawyer in California.