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Chief Probation Officer David Muhammad Sued For Sexual Harassment By The Armstrong Law Firm
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
The Armstrong Law Firm has filed a sexual harassment lawsuit (Alameda County Superior Court, Case RG12621985) against Alameda County and its Chief Probation Officer David Muhammad for the alleged sexual assault and harassment of a Deputy Probation Officer. Muhammad is responsible for overseeing 20,000 people on probation, a staff of 600 and a $90 million budget.
According to the lawsuit, David Muhammad allegedly used his position of authority over the Deputy Probation Officer to allegedly sexually assault her knowing that she feared losing her job if she came forward. The lawsuit also claims that the victim, referred to as Jane Doe, was fearful for her personal safety.
David Muhammad is quoted in several newspapers as stating that prior to being named Alameda County Chief Probation Officer, as a teenager growing up in Oakland under the name David Lee Gaither he was arrested three times, including once for attempted murder.
The lawsuit alleges that Muhammad has a history of intimidating female employees. He also referred to women as "bitches" and "ho's". During his tenure as Chief of Committed Services at Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS) in Washington, D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty was mailed a written complaint from a correctional officer about Muhammad's improper conduct with subordinate female employees.
Today's complaint states that while at DYRS, Muhammad allegedly sexually harassed, assaulted, and intimidated another subordinate female employee. The woman alleges in the lawsuit that Muhammad called her into his office and proceeded to reach over, grab her breasts and put his hands on her legs in her crotch area approximately 5-6 times as he allegedly did with Jane Doe. She reported him for sexual harassment to the Deputy Director of DYRS. The lawsuit also alleges that Muhammad attempted to scare the female by telling her that he was not okay with another female who was trying to contact his wife and "was thinking about getting his boys to mess her up."
While in Washington D.C., Muhammad's wife filed for a divorce based on adultery, Circuit Court for Prince Georges County, Case No. CAD08-37203. The divorce was granted and calls into question Muhammad's claim that, "moral character is the predominant form of leadership". Muhammad has written, "Integrity is important - if you can cheat on your wife, lying to the public will come easy".
In the Jane Doe case, the victim alleges in the complaint that Muhammad harassed her with his inappropriate touching, comments and innuendos that escalated to physical assault when he allegedly forcefully grabbed her in an elevator, causing her to cry out.
The lawsuit alleges that Muhammad asserted his control over Jane Doe and asked her to pick him up from the Oakland Airport because he had a "special assignment" for her. When she picked him up from the airport, Muhammad told her to take him to the San Leandro Marina, where upon arriving, the complaint alleges, he suddenly grabbed her head and started kissing her. Doe tried to pull back, but the lawsuit alleges that Muhammad became very aggressive, pinned her shoulder down with his elbow, and sexually assaulted her despite the fact she kept telling him to stop and eventually pushed him off.
Several days later Muhammad, according to the complaint, tried calling and sending multiple text messages asking Jane Doe to meet with him. Fearful about retaliation by Muhammad and losing her job, Jane Doe agreed to meet with him only in the presence of another individual.
Following the meeting, the lawsuit alleges that Muhammad walked Jane Doe to her car and then asked her to drive him to his car which was parked on the other side of the restaurant. While in Plaintiff's car, Muhammad allegedly leaned over, started to kiss her, and then assaulted Jane Doe again. She told him to stop and get out of her car. The lawsuit alleges that he then put his hands between her legs, and she pushed him away. She repeatedly told him to stop. Muhammad eventually exited her car angry and upset.
In the days and months to follow, the complaint alleges that Muhammad would send text messages to the victim as late as 1 a.m. and several phone calls after that. Jane Doe continued to tell him that she was uninterested, busy, and refused to meet with him.
On approximately October 18, 2011, according to the complaint, Muhammad allegedly called Jane Doe to once again exert his authority over the victim by making her feel that Muhammad expected a sexual favor when he stated that she owed him for transferring her to another job.
Jane Doe states in the lawsuit that in addition to feeling humiliated and ashamed by Muhammad, she has suffered significant emotional distress due to the alleged sexual harassment, sexual assault, and hostile work environment to which she was subjected.
About The Armstrong Law Firm
At The Armstrong Law Firm, our San Jose, Oakland & San Francisco employment attorneys use the law to obtain justice and compensation for people who have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, intimidation or unfair employment practices in the workplace.