Deal reached in Kansas City public housing harassment suit

September 29, 2017 - 10:19 pm

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — The Justice Department has reached a settlement in its 2015 lawsuit against the Kansas City, Kansas, Housing Authority and three of its officials over sexual harassment claims.

A joint motion for dismissal and settlement agreement was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Kansas.

The deal requires the housing authority to submit for approval a policy prohibiting sexual harassment of public housing applicants and tenants and to establish a complaint procedure.

It permanently bans former hearing officer Victor L. Hernandez, former property manager Derrick Estelle, Sr., and former housing director Ronald Cobb from participating in public housing programs.

Under the agreement, the defendants must pay $350,000 to 15 women. They also must pay a $5,000 civil penalty.

The agreement also requires Hernandez and Estelle to pay one woman $10,000.

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