Sexual Harrasment Trial Involving ETMC

Toni Trochu says she endured everything from being groped, propositioned for sex, and verbal abuse from her supervisor. Trochu says the harassment happened several years ago, between 1997 and 1998--when she worked at the ETMC hospital in the town of Crockett, about 50 miles west of Lufkin. She also says, after filing her complaints--the hospital never followed through. Once she pressed the issue, she believes her claims of sexual harassment ultimately got her demoted, then fired.

In court affidavits filed last week, sworn statements from ETMC's former Vice President of Human Resources, Gary Souter seem to support Trochu's harassment claims. He stated, "As soon as I started at ETMC became clear to me that an unhealthy corporate culture existed with regard to matters relating to sex discrimination." He also says that ETMC's C.E.O., Elmer Ellis, responded to Trochu's claims by saying, "Boys will be boys"

Mr. Souter told KLTV he will make no further comment about those statements because of a confidentiality agreement with ETMC. Also today, we spoke with the lawyer representing the hospital in this case, "After Ms. Trochu complained of sexual harassment to her managers, the hospital investigated her allegations, " says AttorneyWiliam Ashcraft. "Investigators found that there was no violation of the hospital's sexual harassment policy. ETMC cannot respond to specific allegations by Gary Souter other than to say there is absolutely not an 'unhealthy corporate culture' at ETMC."

The original harassment petition was filed back in 1999. That trial is set to begin August 19th in Crockett.

The damages Toni Trochu is asking for include back pay, punitive damage as well as compensation for mental anguish and inconvenience.