Woman says co-worker sexually harassed her on the job

By Cara Bailey | Apr 10, 2008

CHARLESTON - A Kanawha County woman filed a suit against a local builder after he allegedly sexually harassed her while they were on a job together.

CHARLESTON - A Kanawha County woman filed a suit against a local builder after he allegedly sexually harassed her while they were on a job together.

Cynthia Dunn filed a suit March 12 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Closets by Design, Kenneth Yonkers Jr. and Arnold Shamblin.

According to the suit, Dunn was hired by Closets by Design on Aug. 17, 2007, to work as a closet installer.

On Nov. 16, 2007, Dunn was instructed to work at a residence in Sissonville to install closet shelving. Upon arrival, Dunn learned she was working with Shamblin.

According to the suit, during the course of the day Shamblin repeatedly inappropriately touched her, and told Dunn that he and she should "go parking."

Dunn claims she continued to reject Shamblin's repeat advances, the suit says. She called a co-worker at the office, Melissa Nottingham, to report the conduct.

"Melissa Nottingham then stated to Dunn, 'I told Ken that (Shamblin) was an old pervert and not to send you to that job,'" the suit says.

Dunn was told to stay and complete the work for the day. According to the suit, she was hesitant to stay, but felt more comfortable since the homeowners were in the same room, unpacking.

However, while Dunn was on a ladder installing shelves, Shamblin entered the closet and tried to run his hand up Dunn's leg in an attempt to touch her genitalia, the suit says.

Dunn immediately left the job site and went back to the office, where she informed Nottingham of what had happened.

Nottingham and Dunn returned to the house later the same day to work on the closet together. According to the suit, Shamblin came into the closet at least three times and asked if the women would engage in a threesome with him.

The suit says fearing further dealings with Shamblin, and as a result of Yonkers failure to take any action, Dunn resigned.

In the six-count suit, Dunn claims she suffered lost wages and benefits, severe emotional and mental distress, humiliation, anxiety, embarrassment, aggravation, annoyance and inconvenience.

She seeks punitive damages to cover her injuries.

Attorney Matthew S. Criswell is representing Dunn. The case has been assigned to Judge Irene Bloom.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 08-C-489

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