A former employee alleges Vanderburgh County Prosecutor Nick Hermann fired her unfairly after she rejected his romantic advances.
The Evansville Courier & Press reported that Samantha Merideth filed a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Evansville Vanderburgh County Human Relations Commission on Tuesday.
She told the newspaper that Hermann made the advances at a professional conference in 2013. Meredith turned him down and said the encounter left her frightened for her job and uncomfortable in his presence. Her complaint claims she was forced to resign from the prosecutor’s office in January.
Since the 2013 encounter, Merideth's complaint claims she experienced harassment at work, where she said Hermann and others spread rumors about her personal life, the Courier & Press reported. Merideth is represented by the Evansville law firm Danks & Danks.
Hermann denied making advances toward Merideth and said he “adamantly disagree(s)” with her account of their interaction. He also stated Merideth told him later he had made her uncomfortable but that was not his intention.
Attorney Mark Miller, a partner at Danks & Danks who will represent Merideth in the proceedings, said the discrimination complaint will be investigated by EEOC’s Indianapolis branch because the complaint concerns a local public official.
Hermann, a Republican, was first elected prosecutor in 2010 and won re-election last year.