Cicero agrees to $675,000 settlement in sexual-harassment case vs. town president
BY BECKY SCHLIKERMAN Staff Reporter August 7, 2013 8:54PM
Updated: September 9, 2013 2:52PM
Cicero Town President Larry Dominick says he knows this much about sexual harassment: “You’re not supposed to touch ‘em, talk dirty, all kinds of stuff like that.”
But despite that, the Town of Cicero has agreed to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to settle a sexual harassment case against Dominick — again.
This time Dominick’s alleged advances — including a request for a threesome with a former town cop and another woman — have resulted in a $675,000 settlement, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.
Dominick denies he ever harassed the former cop.
In a videotaped deposition, Dominick, who was first elected in 2005, says he had sexual harassment training when he was a cop in town.
He learned: “You’re not supposed to touch ‘em, talk dirty, all kinds of stuff like that, you know, general things that most people should understand.”
He was asked: Anything specific you’re not supposed to say that can constitute sexual harassment?
“Things like talkin’ about sex, and even dirty jokes are out of line, and now even kissin’ can be out of line — what may not be offensive to one can be offensive to someone else,” Dominick replies.
Dominick’s spokesman, Ray Hanania, cited a confidentiality agreement and said he couldn’t comment on the case.
But in an email Hanania said the settlement “was covered by an insurance policy held by the town. No deductible was paid. The entire amount was paid by the insurance policy that the town has.”
Dana Kurtz, the attorney for the former cop, Janidet Lujano, declined to comment.
But in the civil complaint Lujano says Dominick “on a constant basis” made sexually explicit comments, including calling Lujano’s breasts “gazangas.” She alleges Dominick touched her breasts.
Among the accusations are that Dominick whispered “into Lujano’s ear that he wanted to have a threesome with her and another woman” and he told Lujano “he wanted to take her to the Sybaris [which bills itself as a ‘romantic getaway’ hotel] and, if not her, then her mother ... because he liked her mother too.”
It’s not the first time the town has settled a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by someone who once worked for Dominick.
In 2011, Cicero agreed to pay the former head of the town animal shelter $500,000.
Sharon Starzyk alleged in court papers that Dominick repeatedly groped or touched her inappropriately, including one instance where he allegedly was sitting next to her in a car, passed gas and then groped her. Starzyk also alleged that Dominick sent her explicit emails in which he suggested she engage in a threesome with two of Dominick’s friends, among other propositions.