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Lake County Sheriff’s Office reaches $875k settlement with dispatchers who say they were sexually harassed at work

The complaint involves the former Lake County undersheriff who was found guilty of incest in an unrelated case in 2018.

LAKE COUNTY, Colorado — The Lake County Sheriff’s Office has agreed to pay $875,000 to three women who sued the department over sexual harassment claims, according to the law firm representing the women.

According to a complaint filed in January, the women were subject to discrimination, a hostile work environment and retaliation for reporting the abuse while working as dispatchers at the Sheriff’s Office.

Most of the sexual harassment was perpetrated by Fernando Mendoza, the Lake County Undersheriff at the time, the women claim in the complaint.

They said he frequently implied or indicated he was turned on by their appearance and bodies; he asked them inappropriate questions about their personal lives; he used sexual innuendos, especially in text messages; and he touched them inappropriately, according to the complaint.

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