Posted: Mar 7, 2013 7:23 PM by MTN News
MISSOULA - A Missoula police detective who investigates internet sex crimes filed a lawsuit against a fellow officer, claiming she sexually harassed him.
The City Attorney said the lawsuit was filed on Wednesday against the Missoula Police Department and several key players within the department.
Detective Chris Shermer, who investigates internet sex crimes, says in April, his superior officer Lt. Sandy Kosena approached him from behind, touched him inappropriately and whispered a sexual innuendo in his ear.
City Attorney Jim Nugent says the allegation not true.
"We disagree with the complaint and the allegations made in the complaint, and we also think it provides a very incomplete picture as to what transpired."
Shermer's attorney said he has no comment, but in the lawsuit Shermer says the incident left him "humiliated and embarrassed."
The suit also says if the roles had been reversed, Shermer would have been severely reprimanded, unlike Lt. Kosena.
Nugent says the suit doesn't tell the full story: Shermer reportedly made an obscene gesture earlier to Lt. Kosena and another officer while driving downtown, but that incident is not addressed in the lawsuit.
"There was a precipitating event that happened before the event that they are complaining about. They failed to mention that in their lawsuit. They failed to acknowledge that he admitted to engaging in the conduct on the public streets, in a public car, but he did."
Nugent says as far as he knows, there are no previous complaints of this nature against Kosena.
Nugent says in December, the Bureau of Human Rights concluded there was not enough evidence to support Shermer's claim of sexual harassment.
(Photos of Shermer and Kosena from file footage.)