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Councilmember Jose Huizar Hit With Sexual Harassment Complaint

Jose Huizar in 2011 (Photo by josehuizar via Flickr)
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City Councilmember Jose Huizar got hit with a sexual harassment complaint back in June by his former chief of staff, and now, he's denying any wrongdoing.

City News Service reports that 33-year-old Francine Godoy, who was hired on to Huizar's staff back in 2006 and most recently worked as his chief of staff, claims that she was subject to sexual advances by the councilman. She also states in the complaint that she was denied a promotion, forced to transfer, sabotaged and retaliated against after she turned those advances down.

The harassment allegedly took place on or before April 21.

A redacted copy of the report was provided to the LA Times, who note that Godoy wrote in the report that she was "subjected to sexual harassment [quid pro quo and hostile work environment] and retaliated against when I refused advances."

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Godoy declined to comment on the case, and her lawyer, Michael Eisenberg, said only that they are currently trying to handle the media surrounding the case.

For his part, Huizar is denying all the claims. In a statement emailed to press, his spokesman, Rick Coca, wrote that the councilman "strongly and emphatically denies the assertions made in the claim sent to the city and intends to fully cooperate with the city in any investigation of this matter."

The Times reports that an independent panel will convene to take a look at the complaint and decide whether it warrants an investigation. The complaint does preserve Godoy's right to file a lawsuit.