sexual harrassment http://wkyufm.org en KSP: No Evidence of Cover-Up Related to Sexual Harassment Case Against Arnold http://wkyufm.org/post/ksp-no-evidence-cover-related-sexual-harassment-case-against-arnold <p></p><p>After a nearly seven-month investigation, Kentucky State Police say they have found no evidence that former Legislative Research Commission Executive Director Bobby Sherman shredded work-related documents to cover-up information on sexual harassment within the state legislature.</p><p>KSP Trooper Paul Blanton says the acting detective on the case has finished his investigation and concluded that Sherman's activities weren't illegal and didn't involve a cover-up of sexual harassment by former state Rep. John Arnold or other lawmakers.</p><p>“The investigation into the destruction of documents to conceal this physical assault or sexual assault--there was no evidence of that."</p><p>Blanton says state police will release the case files sometime in the next two weeks. Fri, 30 May 2014 21:44:06 +0000 Jonathan Meador 48933 at http://wkyufm.org KSP: No Evidence of Cover-Up Related to Sexual Harassment Case Against Arnold In Reversal, Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission Finds Former Lawmaker Guilty http://wkyufm.org/post/reversal-kentucky-legislative-ethics-commission-finds-former-lawmaker-guilty <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">After hours of deliberation and sparring with his defense attorney—not to mention the news media—a full quorum of the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission on Wednesday voted to reprimand and fine former state Rep. John Arnold.</span></p><div><span style="line-height: 1.5;">It was the second, and final, hearing in the ethics case brought against the &nbsp;Union County Democrat by female state House staffers.</span></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>The panel voted 5-1 across three separate complaints to find Arnold guilty of violating state ethics rules. The commission found that he used his position to sexually harass and assault three employees of the state Legislative Research Commission over a period of years. In its votes, the commission reprimanded Arnold for his behavior and fined him a total of $3,000—or $1,000 for each complaint.</div><div> Thu, 08 May 2014 02:03:26 +0000 Jonathan Meador 47689 at http://wkyufm.org In Reversal, Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission Finds Former Lawmaker Guilty Member of Kentucky Ethics Panel Resigns Over John Arnold Case http://wkyufm.org/post/member-kentucky-ethics-panel-resigns-over-john-arnold-case <p>A member of the legislative ethics commission says he is stepping down from his position due to the panel's handling of a case involving former state Rep. John Arnold.</p><p>Vernie McGaha <a href="http://http://cjky.it/1iYtWCv" target="_blank">told The Courier-Journal </a>that he already sent his resignation letter, but was persuaded by Senate President Robert Stivers to remain on the commission until it decides whether to reconsider Arnold's case. Three women testified during a hearing before the panel that Arnold sexually harassed them.</p><p>The commission voted 4-1 to find Arnold guilty. But state law requires at least five "yes" votes from the nine member commission to convict. Three commissioners did not attend the hearing and one seat is vacant.</p><p>The commission is expected to take up the case again at its next meeting on Wednesday. Tue, 06 May 2014 15:39:48 +0000 Associated Press 47635 at http://wkyufm.org Ethics Trial of Former Kentucky Rep. John Arnold Set for Tuesday http://wkyufm.org/post/ethics-trial-former-kentucky-rep-john-arnold-set-tuesday <p></p><p>The ethics trial involving a former Union County lawmaker accused of sexually harassing female state employees will begin Tuesday.&nbsp;</p><p>Three of the women who brought formal ethics complaints against former Rep. John Arnold, a Democrat from Sturgis, are expected to testify at Tuesday’s adjudicatory hearing that will determine whether or not Arnold violated state ethics laws.&nbsp;</p><p>Thomas Clay is an attorney for the women, and he expects the proceedings to go by the numbers.&nbsp;</p><p>“Well I think it’s going to be a typical administrative hearing," the attorney said. "I think they’ll call witnesses. They’ll be subject to direct examination and cross examination, and then the commission will deliberate and make a decision, and hopefully the process will play out.”&nbsp;</p><p>Calls to Arnold’s Bowling Green attorney, Steve Downey, were not returned. Downey has informed Kentucky Public Radio in the past that Arnold will likely not appear at any hearing due to what he says are Arnold’s declining mental and physical health.&nbsp;</p><p>Arnold has denied the charges. Mon, 07 Apr 2014 16:23:21 +0000 Jonathan Meador 46228 at http://wkyufm.org Ethics Trial of Former Kentucky Rep. John Arnold Set for Tuesday Kentucky Lawmakers Receive Training Designed to Combat Sexual Harrassment http://wkyufm.org/post/kentucky-lawmakers-receive-training-designed-combat-sexual-harrassment <p></p><p>Kentucky lawmakers have finished their first-ever training on sexual harassment.</p><p>Over a hundred lawmakers heard a lecture from Aime McFerren, a Louisville attorney with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. She shared strategies for identifying sexual harassment, and the benefits of preventing it.</p><p>“Sex harassment, retaliation, it’s prevalent still," McFerren said. "It’s costly in a monetary sense, but also in a non-monetary sense. I’m sure you can understand that when a workplace is involved in an investigation where someone has alleged discrimination or retaliation it can be very upsetting to the workplace.”</p><p>This has become a larger issue in the General Assembly after revelations that former lawmaker John Arnold allegedly harassed female state employees.</p><p>Rep. Will Coursey has also been accused of retaliating against a female state employee who&nbsp; spoke out about his alleged treatment of a female intern.</p><p>Both men have denied the charges. Wed, 08 Jan 2014 16:58:56 +0000 Jonathan Meador 42174 at http://wkyufm.org Kentucky Lawmakers Receive Training Designed to Combat Sexual Harrassment Special Kentucky House Committee Looking into Harrassment Claims Ending Operations http://wkyufm.org/post/special-kentucky-house-committee-looking-harrassment-claims-ending-operations <p>After nearly four months of meetings and without interviewing a single witness or examining any evidence, the special House committee tasked with investigating claims of sexual harassment against a former state lawmaker voted Thursday afternoon to end its operations.</p><p>This summer, female staffers with the Legislative Research Commission say former Rep. John Arnold, a Democrat from Sturgis, sexually harassed and assaulted them.</p><p>Democratic committee chair Jeff Donohue of Louisville made the motion to disband the panel. He cited an opinion drafted by legal counsel that said lawmakers could not discipline Arnold because he resigned in September.</p><p>“Despite the committee’s lack of jurisdiction and as a member of the House of Representatives, I’d like to work with my colleagues to develop stronger policies and laws to prevent sexual harassment. And that is what I plan to do. And I thank you all for your time today.”</p><p>Donohue says he doesn't know how much the committee has cost taxpayers. Thu, 12 Dec 2013 21:54:14 +0000 Jonathan Meador 41123 at http://wkyufm.org Judge to Decide Who Can Be Named in Sexual Harrassment Suit Involving Arnold http://wkyufm.org/post/judge-decide-who-can-be-named-sexual-harrassment-suit-involving-arnold <p></p><p>A Franklin Circuit Court Judge will decide which parties can be named in a sexual harassment lawsuit against the state and a former Kentucky lawmaker.</p><p>Two women have filed suit against former Representative John Arnold, the Legislative Research Commission, and state government. The women claim Arnold sexually harassed them, and the LRC didn't properly address their complaints.</p><p>Previously, the civil trial was delayed, as the Attorney General said the LRC and the state are the same and can't both be sued. And there's a question over whether the women are non-partisan LRC employees since they serve the body’s partisan leadership.</p><p>Thomas Clay is lead counsel for the women. He thinks they’re technically employees of House Speaker Greg Stumbo, who is also named in the complaint and has asked the court to be removed from the suit. Mon, 18 Nov 2013 18:54:47 +0000 Jonathan Meador 40054 at http://wkyufm.org Judge to Decide Who Can Be Named in Sexual Harrassment Suit Involving Arnold State to Spend $115,000 in Sexual Harassment Case http://wkyufm.org/post/state-spend-115000-sexual-harassment-case <p>The Legislative Research Commission has a $115,000 contract with a Lexington law firm to offer legal guidance in a sexual harassment investigation and to help defend the state in a pending lawsuit.</p><p>Lawmakers unveiled and approved the contract with Landrum &amp; Shouse on Tuesday. The contract runs through June 30, 2014.</p><p>The firm will advise legislative leaders in a continuing investigation into allegations that former Democratic state Rep. John Arnold of Sturgis sexually harassed three legislative staffers. That committee could ultimately recommend Arnold be reprimanded or fined.</p><p>Arnold resigned from the Legislature after the allegations were made public.</p><p>The legislative staffers involved later filed a lawsuit claiming their supervisors didn't protect them from sexual harassment even after they reported it. Tue, 12 Nov 2013 18:26:34 +0000 Associated Press 39768 at http://wkyufm.org Judge Delays Trial Concerning Sexual Harrassment Charges Against Former Kentucky Lawmaker http://wkyufm.org/post/judge-delays-trial-concerning-sexual-harrassment-charges-against-former-kentucky-lawmaker <p>The first hearing in the sexual harassment lawsuit against former state Rep. John Arnold and elements of Kentucky state government revolved Wednesday around&nbsp;determining which parties should be accused.&nbsp;</p><p>The hearing resulted in a delay in the trial until later this month</p><p>Franklin Circuit Court Judge Thomas Wingate heard a motion to dismiss filed in October by Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway, who argued that the state is "legally indistinguishable" from the Legislative Research Commission, which is also a defendant in the suit brought by female LRC employees who allege Arnold sexually harassed and assaulted them.&nbsp;</p><p>In their lawsuit, filed Oct. 1, Yolanda Costner and Cassaundra Cooper&nbsp;named the state and the LRC as defendants. Wed, 06 Nov 2013 18:51:39 +0000 Jonathan Meador 39510 at http://wkyufm.org Ethics Commission Finds Probable Cause that Arnold Sexually Harrassed Female Staffers http://wkyufm.org/post/ethics-commission-finds-probable-cause-arnold-sexually-harrassed-female-staffers <p>The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission has found probable cause that former Union County Representative John Arnold violated ethics rules three times when he allegedly harassed three female staff members.</p><p>Commission members met behind closed doors for nearly two hours Tuesday before returning to an open session and voting unanimously on sexual harassment complaints made against Arnold by legislative staffers Yolanda Costner, Cassaundra Cooper, and Gloria Morgan.<a href="http://www.courier-journal.com/article/20131015/NEWS01/310140117/1001/Kentucky-ethics-commission-finds-probable-cause-Rep-John-Arnold-sexual-harassment-claims" target="_blank"> The Courier-Journal reports</a> the commission has scheduled a full hearing on the complaints for December 12.</p><p>Arnold, a Democrat from Sturgis, served in the state House from 1995 until last month, when he resigned after the sexual harassment allegations against him were made public. Arnold has denied the charges, but said he couldn&rsquo;t move forward politically due to the damage done to his reputation.</p><p>The Legislative Ethics Commission said there was probable cause to believe Arnold had &ldquo;inappropriate and unwanted physical contact&rdquo; with the women.</p><p>Arnold&rsquo;s attorney, Steve Downey of Bowling Green, didn&rsquo;t comment after the commission returned its findings. Tue, 15 Oct 2013 18:35:41 +0000 WKU Public Radio News 38489 at http://wkyufm.org