A civil lawsuit has been filed against the National City Police Department. The case, Ashley Cummins vs. The City of National City, The National City Police Department, and DOES 1-50 alleges that Cummins is filing for damages for a Hostile Work Environment, Disparate Treatment Discrimination (Sex/Gender/Sexual Orientation), Disparate Impact Discrimination, Retaliation, and Failure to Prevent Discrimination and Harassment.
Cummins is represented by Hogue & Belong.
In the court filing, Cummins is asking for judgement against the defendants as follows:
For a jury trial. For general damages. For special compensatory damages including loss of past, present, and future earnings and benefits in a sum to be determined according to proof at time of trial. For punitive damages. For prejudgment and post-judgment interest at the legal rate pursuant to law. For costs of suit. For reasonable attorney’s fees and any other applicable statutory provision, and for such other relief as the Court may deem proper. Cummins demanded trial by jury. The case is set for mediation on Sept. 5.
Hogue & Belong Senior Attorney Associate Julie Kearns, Esq., said this case is an unfortunate situation.
“Ms. Cummins was hired at the NCPD in 2018 after an accomplished eight-year career with the St. Louis police department,” she said. “Highly regarded. High performer. College educated. Came to California to be closer to family. Got hired by the NCPD in 2018, and immediately started witnessing harassment and discrimination, bullying, primarily based on her gender/sexual orientation, and the culture of the NCPD again became obvious to Ms. Cummins at the beginning in terms of the derogatory treatment, comments, and humiliation of women.”
Kearns said this was not happening the same with men, and that Cummins was not the only one suffering from this same type of treatment.
“In 2020, when she was assigned to a particular squad, the D Squad, she began to experience this discrimination more and on a more personal level.
“She was continually belittled in front of her other officers, humiliated, put down, excluded to the point where it was not just social. It crossed into work opportunity,” she said. “She was chilled as we say in the legal world, discouraged. It was futile for her to make any complaints because she had seen that complaints were futile. They do not go anywhere. Nobody investigates. Nobody cures. Nobody has made anything better. She tried to complain to her supervisors to no avail. Of course, she was targeted even further. She became withdrawn within the department to try to avoid the harassment and discrimination that she experienced every time she opened her mouth around her male counterparts. Men that should have been her colleagues. Finally, it simply became too much for her and she was forced to resign after great suffering in 2022, and she continues to greatly suffer.”
In the complaint, it states that from March 2020 to January 2021, Cummins was repeatedly the target of mistreatment by the male officers in her squad, led primarily by Officer Murry Estabrook with the following allegations.
Estabrook humiliating Ms. Cummins by instructing her to leave immediately after arriving on the scene of a crime, without any justification.
Read the complete article here.
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