A New York Chevrolet-Cadillac dealership settled with a former employee who filed a lawsuit claiming that her sexual harassment complaints were improperly handled by store management.
Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. Bloomberg Law first reported the settlement last month.
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on Jan. 28 dismissed the complaint by Christine Domingues against Barton Chevrolet-Cadillac of Newburgh, N.Y., because a settlement was reached one day before a trial was set to begin.
Dealer Ronald Barton did not return multiple requests for comment.
Domingues' lawyer Michael Ranis told Automotive News, "We were pleased it could be resolved." He noted that the discovery period in the lawsuit, which was filed in August 2018, had faced delays because of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the complaint, Domingues, who had worked at the store since 2016 as a parts cashier, said she was groped by a coworker who also made lewd comments about her and directed racial slurs her way. When Domingues confronted the dealership's service manager about the harassment, the complaint said that he "laughed in her face."
The complaint also alleged that when Domingues reported the harassment to Barton he responded that she had no proof of "ongoing" harassment and suggested that she "should file a police charge so that someone could figure out who should be brought up on perjury charges."
According to the complaint, Barton then allegedly altered Domingues' hours and work responsibilities to separate the employees, which Domingues claimed harmed her ability to receive overtime pay.
U.S. District Judge Philip Helpern last year rejected Barton's request to dismiss the complaint.
"It is for a jury to decide whether [Domingues] would not have been transferred to the Service Building but for her complaint to supervisors and Barton that she had been sexually harassed," Helpern said in a court document filed Feb. 17, 2021.