By RYAN DUNN
A former Findlay Police Department sergeant who is suing an officer for defamation must now contend with a countersuit.
Dave Hill, of Van Buren, has filed a $1.5 million defamation suit in Hancock County Common Pleas Court against a female officer who accused him of sexually harassing her in November 2012. He claimed she recklessly or maliciously made false statements.
The female officer responded last week in court, denying Hill’s allegations and suing him for at least $50,000.
The officer commented honestly about Hill, according to a filing from her attorneys, R. Kevin Greenfield of Toledo and Todd Raskin of Cleveland.
She “detailed conduct which she found to have created a hostile work environment,” according to her attorneys.
Hill made sexual comments about the officer, including jokes about an imaginary pregnancy and a demeaning nickname, while serving as her supervisor, according to her suit.
The female officer “made her complaint in good faith, with no knowledge of any falsities and in compliance with the Findlay Police Department’s policy and procedures in regard to reporting sexual harassment,” according to her attorneys.
The Courier is not naming the female officer because of her complaint about sexual harassment at work.
Police officials reprimanded Hill for placing a loaded firearm in his mouth during roll call, according to an internal review. The female officer suing him was called to testify about that case last May.
On July 30, Hill’s wife, Officer Marcia Hill, filed a complaint that the other female officer committed perjury in her testimony against Hill, according to Greenfield and Raskin.
That complaint was not accepted and the unnamed female officer was not disciplined, her attorneys wrote.
Dave Hill remains away from the department despite an arbitrator ruling he should be reinstated. The City of Findlay and police union have taken the dispute to court in a separate case.
The female officer’s suit against Dave Hill requests $25,000 in compensatory damages, $25,000 in punitive damages and additional court costs. Her attorneys ask Judge Reginald Routson to dismiss Hill’s defamation suit.
“As a result of Hill’s illegal retaliation, (the female officer) has incurred legal expenses and otherwise suffered by being subjected to the continued harassment and retaliation caused by being forced to defend this lawsuit,” her attorneys wrote.
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