Department of Veterans Affairs settles assault suit

David Yates Mar. 7, 2016, 4:21pm


The Department of Veterans Affairs has settled a suit brought by a Montgomery County woman who claimed she was injured during a physical attack by a coworker that was ignored.

As previously reported, Michelle R. Purcell filed a lawsuit April 30, 2014, in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas against Eric K. Shinseki, secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, citing violations of the Civil Rights Act.

Court records show that a notice of settlement was filed Nov. 6, 2014. The case was then dismissed two weeks later.

According to the complaint, Purcell experienced sexual harassment from a coworker at the Department of Veterans Affairs that culminated in physical assault on Aug. 9, 2012.

Purcell says the assault rendered her disabled by irritating an existing shoulder injury, and when she reported the above incidents and complaints of sexual harassment and discrimination to supervisors, the defendant allegedly dismissed the injury as arising from "horseplay."

Purcell sought damages within the jurisdictional limits of the court.

Attorneys Woodrow Epperson and George Crow are represented her in the case.

Southern District Court of Texas Houston Division Case No. 14-cv-01182

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