New details in Shelby County Commissioner sexual harassment case - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

New details in Shelby County Commissioner sexual harassment case

New information came to light Thursday on the sexual harassment complaint filed against a sitting Shelby County Commissioner.

An EEOC complaint was delivered to Shelby County officials Wednesday afternoon. It is a federal sexual harassment complaint claiming a commissioner made unwanted and unsolicited sexual advances.  

The complaint, filed by 12-year commission staff member Lynn Ford, claims an unnamed Shelby County commissioner sexually harassed her, creating a sexually hostile work environment.

The complaint claims the commissioner groped and fondled Ford.  The county is hiring an outside law firm to investigate the case because the complaint was filed against the Shelby County as Ford's employer.

"We do it to make sure not thought of impropriety,” said County Attorney Brian Kuhn, “that is county folks are doing investigation to prevent anyone saying something is being covered up."

Calvin Williams, a former Shelby County commission administrator with his own legal problems, said he's not surprised by the complaint.

"First I've got to be careful because this is under investigation and second I've already been indicted twice for wrongs I knew about not wrongs I committed and it's not going to be pretty,” Williams said.

Williams said the commissioner named in the complaint is Cleo Kirk.  “I'm going to say it, because that is the truth, and he'll have to answer the best way he can,” Williams said.

Neither Kirk or Ford would comment about the complaint.

Ford also alleges in the complaint that she complained to the county and asked that she not do work for Kirk any more. She said her job status never changed. 

Kirk, who has been a commissioner for more than 20 years, will leave office in September because of term limits.  Kirk was also defeated in the last election

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