Former police Commander Michael Fryzel faces sexual harassment charges by a female administrative assistant that works for the town of St. John. A sexual harassment attorney on behalf of the woman filed the lawsuit in the US District Court alleging that the former cop sexually harassed her on four occasions between July 2013 and March 2015.
According to the lawsuit, the woman claims Fryzel commented on her breasts and passed other sexual comments while she was on duty at the police radio room. He has also been accused of slapping her buttocks in her office. Several other allegations have been made in the sexual harassment lawsuit. On one occasion, Fryzel is alleged to have poked her breasts and told her that his behavior was all her fault. He then put his hand up her dress and made sexual advances.
Plaintiff alleges attempt to cover up
Fryzel recently retired on March 6th from the police department and had served the St. John Town Council for eight years. According to Town Manager Steve Kil, he did not face any disciplinary action prior to retirement. In her federal lawsuit, the woman claims that both the town manager and Police Chief Fred Frego had requested her to refrain from filing a sexual harassment lawsuit and in return sought Fryzel’s retirement.
They have been accused of asking the plaintiff to keep silent about her claims. Frego is also mentioned in the lawsuit as being present when Fryzel commented on the plaintiff’s breasts. The woman claims to have complained to Frego who ended up telling her that things could turn ugly if she went ahead with a lawsuit.
Kil and Frego have acknowledged receipt of the lawsuit and said that since it was a personal matter the suit would taken up by their legal counsel. The Town Manager preferred to reserve his judgment while Fryzel was unavailable for comment. The former cop had resigned from the Town Council in May 2011 and was known for his efforts in expanding the Town Hall and building a new public safety facility.
Two women granted order of protection granted from former police chief
According to the plaintiff’s sexual harassment attorney, a protective order was granted by Lake Circuit Judge George Paras. The attorney said the judge had also granted an order of protection from the former cop for another female town employee.
The plaintiff seeks $350,000 in addition to punitive damages from Fryzel and $250,000 and punitive damages from Frego and Kil. The damages against Fryzel is based on a claim of false imprisonment and assault and battery while those against Frego and Kil are based on claims of conspiracy to obstruct justice and violation of the plaintiff’s First Amendment rights.
NE Ohio police officer claims sexual harassment by former police chief
Less than a month ago, a NE Ohio police officer Crystal Casterline filed a lawsuit against David Oliver, a popular small town police chief who had recently resigned. In the lawsuit, Oliver has been accused of sexual harassment, gender discrimination, and retaliation. Casterline alleges that the former police chief touched her and passed sexual comments. On one occasion she alleges he physically struck her on the thigh and throat.