LUFKIN – An Angelina County woman’s federal lawsuit accuses Atkinson Candy Co. and Express Services, Inc. of sex discrimination and retaliation.
April Windham initiated legal action against her former employers in the Lufkin Division of the Eastern District of Texas on May 14, claiming they terminated her for pushing back against a hostile work environment purportedly created by her then-supervisor.
Recent court documents allege that Frank Moko, the quality assurance manager for Atkinson Candy, sexually harassed Windham during her course of employment as a quality assurance inspector from August to September 2017.
According to the plaintiff, Moko wanted to engage in a romantic relationship with her to her discomfort. He then reportedly engaged in physically inappropriate advances toward, and touching of, Windham at the work site.
Windham reported Moko to an Express recruiting specialist. Her father, meanwhile, spoke to Atkinson’s human resources department “about what had been happening to his daughter at the hands of Moko.”
The suit adds that the owner of the Express location in Lufkin attempted to discourage Windham from reporting the assault to law enforcement.
Atkinson ultimately terminated Windham’s assignment after hearing and siding with Moko, the original petition says.
Windham states that Express did not assist her with securing another job assignment because of what had occurred with her at Atkinson.
Consequently, she seeks unspecified monetary damages and a jury trial.
Kerry V. O’Brien of the O’Brien Law Firm in Austin is representing the complainant.
Lufkin Division of the Eastern District of Texas Case No. 9:18-CV-0077