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Posted On: March 22, 2009 by Peter M. LaSorsa

Seattle court sexual harassment case settled for $135,000

A former Seattle Municipal Court worker is getting $135,000 to settle a sexual harassment case involving a judge. According to the settlement agreement half the money will be paid by the taxpayers and half by Judge Ron A. Mamiya. The former courthouse worker is not identified in court documents and it appears the relationship started as a consensual affair last year. The former staff member, a mother of two, says Mamiya repeatedly made unwanted advances after they agreed to break off the affair-which constituted a hostile work environment.

In February 2008, the two began a sexual relationship, meeting at a hotel in Seattle and another hotel near Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, she said. He also visited her in her court office in the late afternoon and would kiss her and touch her sexually. Mamiya became jealous when he saw her talking to other men at work according to the Seattle Times.

Mamiya has been a Municipal Court judge since 1981. He released a statement acknowledging what he calls "my horrible lapse in judgment."

After the breakup, the employee said, she received an anonymous letter at work, asserting that she was unstable. At one point, the judge put her on the phone with someone, whose name was redacted from the documents, to assure the person that their relationship was professional. These are both forms of retaliation.

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