Woman’s Sex Harassment Suit Against School Official Settled
A San Bernardino County school-community liaison officer said Monday that a settlement has been reached in her sexual harassment lawsuit against county Supt. of Schools Charles S. Terrell Jr.
“I’m happy as a clam,” said Linda Frost, 49, a former Apple Valley Unified School Board member who charged that Terrell repeatedly telephoned her at home and made lewd comments.
Frost and her lawyers said they were bound by a confidentiality clause not to disclose the terms of the agreement. However, Frost, who had sought $120,000 in damages, acknowledged that she had resigned as of last Friday from her post of five years with the superintendent’s office.
Neither Terrell, an elected superintendent for 11 years, nor his attorneys could be reached Monday for comment.
Diana Scott, an attorney for Frost, said an agreement was reached during a confidential court hearing before San Bernardino County Superior Court Judge Carl E. Davis on Dec. 20. Another hearing on the case has been scheduled for Jan. 3, according to Davis’ clerk.
Scott said that under terms of the agreement, neither side admitted liability.
In court documents, Frost charged that Terrell violated her civil rights and caused her humiliation by repeatedly making suggestive calls to her. In one case, she charged, he told her he was watching a dirty movie in a Sacramento hotel and asked her “to masturbate while he did.”
Frost has contended to reporters that Terrell’s lawyers, paid with public funds, were filing a battery of legal motions aimed at prolonging the case until she ran out of money to pay her own attorneys. By mid-October, Terrell’s office reported $170,000 in public expenditures--while Frost said she owed her attorneys $49,000.
Last month, the ACLU of Southern California entered the case, without fee, on Frost’s behalf.
ACLU legal director Paul Hoffman said Monday that the organization’s participation may have helped hasten the agreement.