Ranson woman sues jail authority, employee for sexual harassment

MARTINSBURG -- A Ranson woman is suing the West Virginia Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority and one of its employees for sexual harassment.

Dawn Light is an employee of Prime Care Medical and works as a licensed practical nurse at the Eastern Regional Jail in Martinsburg.

In early September 2009, Sgt. Craig Richmond came to the medical department and stated he had a medical condition he wanted to have checked, according to a complaint filed April 1 in Berkeley Circuit Court.

Light claims Richmond stated the medical concern involved his penis, and when she examined it she discovered an infected pus-filled area. She claims she cleaned the infected area and instructed Richmond as to the proposed treatment, which required dressing changes for four or five days.

After one week, Richmond entered the medical department and asked Light to examine his penis again to make sure it was healed, to which she advised she would if he thought it was necessary and left to retrieve gloves, according to the suit.

Light claims Richmond insisted she did not need glove and that she just needed to "kiss it and make it feel better." Light claims she informed Richmond she was his nurse and he was her patient and they needed to maintain a professional relationship.

Light claims Richmond returned after several days and solicited sex from her, to which she informed him that his comments were inappropriate.

Several hours later, Light claims Richmond came back to medical department and called out that he needed help, but when she came to the entrance, Richmond was standing with his penis intentionally exposed for her to see.

Light claims Richmond also made inappropriate comments to a female officer and she reported his sexual harassment to her immediate supervisor.

On Dec. 4, 2009, the EE Coordinator, John Lopez, sent a letter to Light that the investigation was completed, her claim had been substantiated and the appropriate action would be taken, according to the suit.

Lopez later contacted Light and informed her she needed to "look at the big picture and take into consideration that Sgt. Richmond had been employed for 12 years," according to the suit.

Light is seeking a permanent injunction enjoining the West Virginia Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority and its officers from engaging in sexual discrimination; order the defendants to institute and carry put policies, practices and programs; and compensatory and punitive damages. She is being represented by Harry P. Waddell.

Berkeley Circuit Court case number: 10-C-282

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