Town of Sorrento threatened with a lawsuit

SORRENTO, LA (WAFB) - The Town of Sorrento has been threatened with a lawsuit. Three police officers allege they were racially discriminated against and sexually harassed by Chief Earl Theriot. They have hired an attorney.

The notice came in the form of a letter sent via facsimile to Sorrento Town Hall on Friday. It addresses Mayor Wilson Longanecker, Junior and the council. Attorney, Harry Shoemaker, III advises the group that he has "been retained by Officers Catherine I. Gil, Tige D. Scott and Kermit J. Givens in their tort and civil rights violations and harassment against Sorrento's police chief and other officials, Sorrento's police department and the Town of Sorrento."

Shoemaker has requested that the town council discuss the details of the claims during an executive session and come up with, "… a formal settlement proposal to try and effect a final settlement and resolution of this matter."

Mayor Longanecker said he got the letter but is not aware of the details of the allegations. However, he said a final settlement, if monetary, is out of the question.

Chief Theriot said he first heard of the letter in the news and referred 9News to the town attorney, Donovan Hudson, who met with the chief at town hall on Monday morning. Hudson said he has advised the chief to comment only after he learns the specifics of the claims.

The council is scheduled to go into executive session to discuss the possible litigation at Tuesday night's meeting.

Shoemaker told 9News he is prepared to move forward with a formal lawsuit if a resolution is not reached.

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