Woman says construction company worker made work hostile

By Cara Bailey | Dec 11, 2008

CHARLESTON - A Kanawha County woman has filed a suit against a local construction company and one of its employees, claiming the employee sexually harassed her and created a hostile work environment.

Sherry Cochran filed the suit Oct. 24 against Babcock and Wilcox Construction Co. Inc. and Ron Carte, an employee of Babcock and Wilcox who was Cochran's supervisor at the John Amos Power Plant.

According to Cochran's suit, she was subjected by Carte to unwelcome sexual remarks, physical contact, physical advances, and coercive and threatening behavior, which had the purpose and effect of creating a hostile work environment.

Cochran claims Carte repeatedly asked her out, failed to respond to complaints that another worker was harassing her, allowed other workers to call her vulgar names and inappropriately reminded Cochran that she should treat him favorable because he gave her the job, the suit says.

According to the suit, Carte and other employees routinely harass female employees.

In the two-count suit, Cochran claims she suffered lost wages, damages for humiliation, embarrassment, emotional and mental distress and loss of personal dignity, punitive damages, court costs and other damages. She seeks relief for her injuries.

Attorney Paul M. Stroebel is representing Cochran. The case has been assigned to Judge Paul Zakaib.

Kanawha Circuit Case number 08-C-2094

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