County pays $185K to settle sexual harassment lawsuit

By The Associated Press

CROWN POINT — Lake County has agreed to pay $185,000 to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against the northwestern Indiana county’s recorder.

County attorney John Dull confirmed Monday that taxpayers will finance the payment to Estela Montalvo. The former part-time recorder’s office employee sued Recorder Michael B. Brown and the county in federal court last year, alleging sexual harassment.

Brown said Monday he maintains his innocence, but took his attorney’s advice to resolve the matter and move on with his career.

The (Northwest Indiana) Times reports the settlement means there will be no trial to review conflicting claims of an office romance or evidence of a wider hostile work environment in which promotions were traded for sexual favors.

Montalvo’s attorney declined comment Monday, saying the parties agreed to keep the settlement confidential.

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