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Southampton Township, Cumberland, lawsuit settled out of court

23 January 2013 No Comment

By AMBER SOUTH
@ShipNewsGirl

CUMBERLAND COUNTY — A lawsuit filed against Southampton Township, Cumberland County, has been resolved out of court. The suit was filed by two former employees who claimed they were discriminated against after reporting a township official’s sexual misconduct.

A spokesperson with the employees’ attorney, Patrick J. Redding, Chambersburg, was unable to elaborate on the outcome, per instructions from the attorney.

Both clients are pleased with the outcome, the spokesperson said.

A second attorney for the plaintiffs, Richard P. Mislitsky, was unavailable to comment Tuesday. Attorneys for Southampton Township did not respond for requests for comment.

The lawsuit stems from separate incidents involving either employee and former township supervisor James Gruver, generally between November 2007 and August 2009.

According to court documents, both women claimed Gruver repeatedly sexually and physically harassed, assaulted and discriminated against them. They described various situations in which Gruver said sexual, derogatory comments and forced sexual contact despite insistence that he stop.

Each woman complained of Gruver’s behavior to township supervisors Thomas L. Ginnick and George Bauserman Sr., court documents said. When officials failed to take action, the women reported the story to Pennsylvania State Police.

Following each woman’s involvement with police, Gruver, Ginnick, Bauserman and other township officials subjected them to retaliatory actions, according to court documents.

A civil lawsuit against Gruver remains, Redding’s spokesperson said. According to court documents, it is set to go to a jury trial in March.

In a criminal case, Gruver pleaded no contest to two counts of indecent assault and was sentenced to 45 days to 18 months in Cumberland County Jail. He received parole several days into his sentence, on July 19, 2010.

Ginnick and Bauserman were listed as separate defendants, but were eliminated Dec. 17. Ginnick was re-elected in November 2009 for a six-year term and Bauserman was re-elected in November 2011 for a six-year term.

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Amber South can be reached at asouth@publicopinionnews.com and 262-4771.

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