Former library administrator suing Lake City, local officials - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Former library administrator suing Lake City, local officials


LAKE CITY, Minn. (KTTC-TV) -- A former city library administrator is suing the City of Lake City, Mayor Jerry Dunbar, and two other city officials after mediation failed to settle her claims of wrongdoing.

The Bloomington law firm Villaume & Schiek, P.A. has been representing Sheryl Mooers, and on Friday afternoon, indicated it is serving a Summons and Complaint on the parties with an intent to file in Wabasha District Court as early as next week.

The firm says mediation supervised by former Hennepin Co. District Judge Allen Oleisky was unsuccessful in resolving Mooers' claims, which include sexual harassment, breach of contract, retaliation and defamation.

"The City did not come to mediation prepared to resolve the issues," said Ms. Mooers, in a statement provided to reporters.  "I don't believe they ever intended to try and work out a resolution through mediation." 

In the 79-page complaint, Mayor Dunbar is accused of making unwanted sexual advances toward Ms. Mooers with personal actions, phone calls and email messages.  The former library administrator contends that when she attempted to improve the work performance of one of the library staff, Diane Spence, that her husband Lake City council member Mark Spence retaliated.  Before Mooers was hired, Spence had also applied for the position.

Reached at work, Mayor Dunbar referred questions to an attorney with the League of Minnesota Cities, which will be defending all of the Lake City officials named in the complaint.

"I haven't had a chance to review the voluminous complaint, I just received it this afternoon," said attorney Julie Fleming-Wolfe, from the League of Minnesota Cities.  "I will tell you that we are not going to litigate this in the media, but we will vigorously litigate and defense against false allegations in court."

Mooers began work as the Lake City Library Administrator on August 16, 2010, and the legal complaint contends that she was suspended from her job by the City Council on January 31, 2012, with a hand-delivered notice, and then escorted off the library premises by a city police officer. 

Click here to read the full complaint.

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