EEOC case detailing sexual harassment targets St. Joseph County Dem. Chair

Stan Wruble, Chair, St. Joseph County Democrat Party

South Bend, Ind. — A recently uncovered EEOC complaint targets the Chair of the St. Joseph County Democrat Party, Stan Wruble. The Charge of Discrimination claims Wruble took no action when his party’s appointee to the Voter Registration Office sexually harassed a female Republican employee of the same office.

The EEOC closed its file on the case last week citing “The Respondent employs less than the required number of employees or is not otherwise covered by the statutes.” However, the decision lays out the alleged victim’s right to sue Wruble and the St. Joseph Democrat Party based on the charge. The victim, who will not be named by REAL News Michiana, would not comment on the possibility of a lawsuit being filed against Wruble.

The charge also alleges another Democrat employee of the office, Connor Stigner, created a fake registration card in the time leading up to the 2020 election with the name “Lotsa Vagina” with an address on “Swallow Court.” Stigner ran for a seat on the board at the South Bend Community School Corporation in 2020.

The victim in this case already filed a federal lawsuit against Muhammad Shabazz, the Democratic Board Member of the Voter Registration office, along with the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners in December.

According to the federal lawsuit, Shabazz sexually harassed the female victim over an extended period of time. The lawsuit says he was persistent in his advances toward his female Republican colleague. Despite her explaining she was married, he continued to harass her. He would ask her to kiss. He would call her with sexual advances. And, continued this behavior even after the alleged victim notified her superiors.

The victim and several others in the office complained about Shabazz’ behavior to the county Human Resources Director, Kim Karkiewicz. Karkiewicz directed Shabazz to work from home, but he returned two weeks later in part because Karkiewicz “lacked the authority to direct Shabazz’ work performance.” That’s because Shabazz was appointed to his position by the chair of the county’s Democrat party, according to court documents.

Knowing she would have to work with her accused sexual harasser, the alleged victim in this case resigned.

But, that’s just what’s in the lawsuit. According to the GOP Chair, Zach Potts, his party and office was stonewalled by the democrats and folks within the county-city building for months.

“I learned of the incident on September 22nd.” Potts said. “My two Republican workers have been called racial slurs, sexist slurs, had sexual innuendos made about them and were sexually harassed.”

Potts says he immediately contacted Stan Wruble, the Democrat Vice-Chair and the county’s HR department, calling for the immediate removal of Shabazz by the beginning of the following week.

“I heard nothing.” He said. “The county HR person responded quickly and assured me they take matters like this seriously, although we have found that to be false.”

Four days later, Potts says the county attorney contacted him and said Shabazz was going to work from home until after the 2020 general election and he agreed to apologize.

“This response from the County HR and Attorney to sexual harassment was disturbing. A huge failure on the County’s part. (Not only was he sent to work from home during the busiest and most important weeks leading up to the election) to this day he has not apologized.” Potts said.

Potts says Shabazz actually got overtime pay while working from home during what was supposed to be “punishment” for his behavior.

“The Democrat Chair can remove their appointed Board member at any time for any reason, yet has failed to remove him after committing sexual harassment against a female co-worker and female subordinate.” Potts added. “I demand that the Democrat Chair remove their alleged sexual predator Democrat Board member. If he won’t, then he needs to resign.”

“This is an office that the public interacts with on a daily basis and they should not have to worry about becoming a victim when interacting with their local government.” Potts concluded.

A copy of the EEOC charge is listed below with redactions to protect the identity of the alleged victim.

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