JOPLIN, Mo. (CN) – A police officer was fired after she rebuffed an alderman’s repeated, and graphic, sexual demands, she says in a federal complaint. She claims Alderman Jeremy Hopper besieged her with vile behavior, and told her “that no one could touch him” because “he and the mayor were ‘best buddies.'”
Whitney Dodson says Alderman Hopper barraged her with sexual demands. He told her, among other things, that “I have a huge dick”; “I want to see you naked”; “I would fuck you in a heartbeat;” that he was “going to slide his dick into you,” and was going to “stick his dick into her,” according to the complaint.
Dodson says Hopper came to the station one day when she was alone and began to unzip his pants, forcing her to run into the bathroom. She says he sent her several sexually explicit texts and told her “that since he was now an alderman for the City that no one could touch him and that he and the mayor were ‘best buddies.'”
Dodson says she complained to Police Chief Gail Bass, who moved her from the midnight shift to the midday shift.
Hopper then started a rumor that Dodson was sleeping with Bass, and in June he ordered Chief Bass to move Dodson back to the midnight shift, according to the complaint. Bass was fired five days later.
Dodson says the day after Bass was fired she told Granby Mayor Paul Ferguson about Hopper’s sexual harassment, and that she “felt that her job was now in jeopardy since Chief Bass was no longer there to protect her.”
She says the mayor responded by asking her “to give him ‘solid proof’ of Hopper’s remarks and behavior.” If she provided it, she says, the mayor said, “he would have Hopper impeached.”
Dodson says the stress was so great her doctor ordered her to take a month off of work. During that month, she says, new Police Chief R. Scott Whitman fired her.
Dodson seeks punitive damages from the City of Granby for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Her attorney, Michael Smalley of Joplin, has requested that the trial take place in Springfield, Mo.