Leading Kansas lawmakers voted Friday to approve a settlement in a case involving an employee who was allegedly raped by a patient at Osawatomie State Hospital in 2015.
Those lawmakers refused media requests to disclose the amount of money the state would spend. The Kansas Attorney General’s office later confirmed the settlement was for $133,000.
Federal investigators looking at Osawatomie blamed the incident on gaps in safety and cited it as factor when revoking the hospital’s federal Medicare certification, which costs the state $1 million a month in federal aid.
High ranking public officials, including Gov. Sam Brownback and legislative leaders, publicly voted in favor of the settlement following a closed session of the state finance council Friday afternoon.
The sex discrimination and harassment lawsuit was filed late last year against the state of Kansas in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Kan.
The suit describes how the plaintiff felt she was exposed to a “sexually hostile work environment,” and alleges that “Kansas failed to take reasonable steps to protect her.”
Case documents in the lawsuit describe what the woman says happened to her in October 2015 while she was working as a mental health technician.
She went to take a gown to a new patient at the psychiatric hospital, but when she went into the patient’s room, according to the suit, she was grabbed, thrown onto the bed and choked and raped.
The woman says in the suit that she knocked on the wall and screamed for help.
It wasn’t until a few minutes later, according to the suit, that two other patients heard the woman screaming and crying and were able to come into the room and pull the attacker off of her.
The Star’s Bryan Lowry and Tony Rizzo contributed to this report.