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Former Oneida County corrections officer claims sex discrimination within Sheriff's OfficeSubmitted: 03/17/2014

Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com


RHINELANDER - A former Oneida County jail employee believes she was discriminated against and passed over for a promotion because she is a woman.

Tracy Congleton and her lawyer believe sex discrimination was commonly tolerated within the Oneida County Sheriff's Office.

Congleton had been a corrections officer in Oneida County until last November.

Her discrimination complaint against the county claims another jail worker, Keith Fabianski, humiliated her.

In one instance, she says he told her, "If I wanted you to talk I will tell you to talk".

"There was a fair amount of sex discrimination on a day-to-day basis that was tolerated in the Sheriff's Department," Congleton's attorney, Jeff Scott Olson, told us.

We talked to Fabianski on Monday.

He had no response to the claims against him.

Congleton also believes she was passed over for a promotion to Assistant Jail Administrator because of her sex.

She says that after she was the only qualified person to apply, the job description was changed so that Fabianski could be hired.

"I think Ms. Congleton was treated poorly as a woman. I think the procedures employed were irregular and clearly designed to implement a campaign of favoritism," Olson said.

Congleton's lawyer also said he expects to find more evidence of sex discrimination by Oneida County.

Sheriff Grady Hartman told us Monday he looks forward to vigorously defending himself and the Sheriff's Office in this case.

Green Bay lawyer John Haase will defend Oneida County in the case.

Congleton's lawyer said he expects the state to take several months to determine if there is probable cause to move forward with the complaint.

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