Woman Receives $450,000 To Settle Sexual Harassment Lawsuit
The state of Oregon and former Public Safety Standards and Training director John Minnis pays $450,000 to a woman who had accused Minnis of sexual harassment. Minnis no longer works in his position as he was forced to quit after the allegations in the lawsuit became public. The woman who remains annonymous worked for Minnis and alleged that he sexually harassed her at the job and exploited her alcoholism in attempts to seduce her on business trips.
What was utilized to prove the sexual harassment was a timeline of events that was out of place along with the statement of the woman. In this case Minnis promoted the woman then gave her a raise that was out of the norm. Minnis and Doe attended a work-related conference in Bend and at that conference Minnis groped Doe in a hot tub and in his room, but she told him that she was not interested. Even though this would be her word against his, the other evidence provided a story of its own.
Two weeks after the business trip where Minnis gropes her, he gives Doe a merit increase in pay. Her pay under Minnis increased from $1,912 per month to $4,039 per month. That is a huge increase in salary in such a short period of time. What is even more alarming is that in state government agency's pay is usually structures so increases like that just don't happen. This is the type of evidence that can be utilized at trial to show something else was going on at work. Sometimes the person doing the sexual harassment will not engage in retaliation when the person doesn't go along with the request for sex, but will try to sweeten the pot by giving a promotion or raise.