FOX16 Investigates: Lawsuit filed against Perry County Sheriff’s Office over sexual harassment claims

Investigates

PERRY COUNTY, Ark. — A current and a former Perry County Sheriff’s deputy are suing over sexual harassment they say went unchecked for months.

Perry County K-9 Deputy Christy Biddle claims she was sexually harassed by her supervisor, Sgt. Keenan Carter. She claims that when she reported the alleged abuse to Sheriff Scott Montgomery, she was retaliated against. 

“The words, the acts that was intimated should happen would be clearly offensive to someone, I’m not even sure if you were married to that woman,” said Biddle’s attorney Robert Newcomb.

The lawsuit claims Sgt. Carter would take inappropriate pictures of Biddle while she was bending over and demand she hug him. Newcomb calls those the least offensive things that happened. 

“Sgt. Carter would say in front of other employees and inmates stuff such as, ‘if you got some of my — you would run your old man off,'” Newcomb said, reading off the lawsuit. 

Newcomb says last September, Biddle took those complaints to Sheriff Montgomery, something the suit claims led to her being put on a worse shift and often had her K-9 pulled from working with her. 

“He did not fire this deputy, he did not completely remove this sergeant from having any supervision of my client,” Newcomb added. 

When we reached out to the Sheriff and Sgt. Carter, we were told they had no comment. 

Last year, Carter was named Perry County’s Law Enforcement Officer of the Year, an award handed out by the Attorney General’s Office. 

Newcomb says around the same time, former Deputy Nathan Williams saw the alleged against Biddle, abuse reported it, and then was forced out of his job. 

“Went to the Sheriff and said this is what Sgt. Carter is doing, it isn’t right and they messed with him,” Newcomb said. 

It’s now all part of a case that’s asking for more than just damages. 

“We’re asking the Sheriff to develop and enforce a true sexual harassment policy,” Newcomb said. 

We reached out to the attorney representing the Sheriff and Sgt. Carter but have not heard back. 

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