ROCKLAND — Knox County paid $86,500 to settle a lawsuit with a former corrections officer who claimed she was sexually harassed for the three years she worked at the Knox County Jail.

As is typical with out-of-court settlements, neither side admits blame as part of the settlement.

The notice of the settlement was filed May 31 in U.S. District Court in Portland by the attorneys involved in the civil lawsuit filed in September 2021 against Knox County by Elizabeth Myers of St. George.

The county released the settlement Monday at the request of The Courier-Gazette.

This settlement comes two months after the Maine Department of Corrections paid $395,000 to settle a lawsuit with Autumn Dinsmore, a female prison guard from Rockland who sued after enduring a hostile work environment because of her gender and sexual orientation while working at the Maine State Prison and Bolduc Correctional Facility, in Warren.

The Knox County lawsuit was settled following a mediation session the two sides held on May 23 with attorney Jerrol Crouter.


Under the settlement, Myers will receive $2,500 in back pay, $47,500 for her claims of non-economic damages, and $36,500 to pay for attorneys’ fees.

The St. George woman filed a complaint with the Maine Human Rights Commission, which gave Myers a notice in July 2021 she could sue since the commission did not yet act on her claims.

The county denied the claims made by the former corrections officer in its formal response to the lawsuit filed in court prior to the settlement.

Myers began working for the county in July 2017 as a part-time corrections officer and her employment ended in June 2020.

During her first year on the job, a male co-worker – identified only as Dan and DB – “consistently made sexual comments to plaintiff about her body and his own body. He openly discussed his sex life with plaintiff, despite plaintiff telling him she did not want to hear about it,” according to the lawsuit.

On one occasion, the co-worker “cornered plaintiff in a closet and closed the door. He pushed his body against plaintiff’s body, trapping her. Plaintiff shouted at (the co-worker), among other exclamations, to stop,” the complaint said.


Myers then reported what happened to her female supervisor, who confided the man touched her breast and also made sexual comments to her in the past. She told Myers that was “just the way (he) was,” the lawsuit alleges.

Over the subsequent months, the male officer continued to sexually harass Myers, including touching her buttocks, blocking her path so she had to squeeze by him, and making comments about his sex life. Myers reported the behavior to two different supervisors, according to her complaint.

The lawsuit also alleges that when she reported to work one day she was reassigned from medium security to the female minimum security part of the jail. The woman said two female inmates said the male co-worker sexually harassed one of them and they reported it, leading to him being reassigned to the medium security part of the jail.


Nothing was done, and eventually she sent a Facebook message to a co-worker, complaining about the harassment and the lack of response by supervisors.

She said she was then called into a meeting with the jail administrator and another supervisor, and told she was creating a toxic work environment and was fired.


Myers said she was also discriminated against because of her age; she was 73 when she filed the lawsuit. She said one of her supervisors asked her shortly before she was terminated when she planned to retire, people would call her “Grandma,” and tell her she was too old for the job.

The lawsuit had sought to have her reinstated to her job or front pay in lieu of reinstatement, back pay going back to June 2020, and damages for mental anguish, loss of dignity and other intangible injuries, as well as attorneys fees.

Myers was represented by attorneys Andrew Cotter of Kennebunk and James Clifford of Portland.

Knox County is represented by attorneys Cassandra Shaffer and Peter Marchesi of Waterville.

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