Talk about burying the lead

This is an article from MyCentralJersey.com:

TRENTON — A New Jersey State Police sergeant suspended over accusations that she sexually harassed another female trooper says the State Police treats lesbian troopers unfairly.

Sgt. Christine Shallcross was suspended without pay on Dec. 31 pending the outcome of an internal investigation after another female trooper claimed the 14-year veteran sexually harassed her during and after academy training.

A lawyer for Shallcross told The Associated Press that he believes her suspension was the result of an “organized attack on the gay female trooper community” by other troopers who are envious that they have not been promoted.

“We look forward to defending this case and exposing the conspiracy that led to it,” said Shallcross attorney George Daggett.

David Wald, a spokesman for the Division of Law and Public Safety, which oversees the State Police, declined to comment on the case because it was a personnel matter and was still under investigation.

Shallcross was assigned to the internal investigations bureau at the time of her suspension.

Her suspension followed the filing of a harassment lawsuit last month by another trooper, 29-year-old Alexis Hayes, who claimed she was subject to sexual and other harassment by Shallcross and was retaliated against for reporting it.

The suit contends that at the academy Shallcross once grabbed Hayes’s necktie so hard that the clasp broke off. She said Shallcross also demeaned her by calling her “peanut” and drawing on her face with a black permanent marker. After graduation, Hayes said the 43-year-old Shallcross whispered in Hayes’ ear and kissed her on the cheek.

Shallcross was later assigned to the Internal Affairs Bureau.

“She denies that there ever was any sexual harassment by her against anybody,” Daggett said.

Hayes’ lawsuit requests a jury trial and that an independent monitor be appointed to oversee the State Police’s internal affairs unit.

The lawsuit also contends Hayes was raped by a male trooper. No criminal charges have been filed in either case. The male trooper was placed on leave in November.

I realize homosexuality in law enforcement and the military is a hot topic these days, but really?  I’d have to say that last ‘fact’ reported is the written equivalent of the quick disclaimer speech given at the end of most radio car commercials.

Sure, a trooper accused another female trooper of sexual harassment and abuse, but this same accusing trooper also says she was RAPED by a male trooper?  Does that little tidbit really not warrant a higher place in the story?  I guess not.

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~ by chrismcdevitt on January 13, 2010.

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