NYPD officer files harassment suit

Posted in Sexual Harassment on June 17, 2013

Unfortunately, in some workplaces, harassment is not treated as seriously as it should be. A New York Police Department officer recently filed suit against the department, claiming that she was both sexually harassed and unfairly targeted for discipline after she brought her concerns to her superiors.

Officer Jazmia Inserillo had just joined the NYPD when her lieutenant, officer Jason Margolis, began harassing her, according to her suit. Inserillo claims that Margolis not only made inappropriate comments about her body, but also invited her to his home when his wife was out of town and hugged her inappropriately when she returned to work from a 2011 sick leave. Margolis also allegedly massaged her shoulders in a sexually suggestive manner.

While these activities were occurring, Inserillo claims that Margolis bragged about having powerful friends in NYPD leadership.

After an incident where Margolis began rubbing her back at work, Inserillo approached her superiors to make a formal complaint about the lieutenant’s behavior. She expected the department to act, but instead was sent to a psychologist for an official evaluation. The police psychologist determined that Inserillo had a drinking problem and she was ordered to enter a substance abuse program immediately. Inserillo refused, however, and was suspended from work for 30 days. A disciplinary hearing on the issue is still pending.

Although other female officers also said that they had experienced similar treatment from Margolis, his punishment has been minimal. He was forced to give up 10 vacation days and attended a mandatory workplace professionalism seminar.

Source: New York Daily News, “‘Terribly abused’ female police officer files sexual harassment lawsuit against lieutenant,” John Marzulli, June 17, 2013