As Philadelphia Sheriff Jewell Williams faces a lawsuit accusing him personally of sexually harassing a female subordinate in the workplace, police have arrested a sergeant in the Sheriff's Office on charges of allegedly indecently assaulting one of his female staff members, police said.
Stephen Postell, 43, of the 3000 block of South 74th Street, a sergeant at the Philadelphia Sheriff’s office, is facing indecent assault, simple assault and indecent exposure charges for allegedly attempting to abuse the woman at work, and will be fired.
The victim, 43, reported to the police department’s Special Victims Unit on Oct. 27 that her immediate supervisor had twice attempted to force himself on her sexually. The Sheriff's Office said that their Internal Affairs Division was first alerted to the incident and promptly referred her to law enforcement, they said.
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"We take all allegations of sexual harassment and abuse seriously," the Sheriff's Office said in a statement. "We are committed to maintaining a work environment in which all our employees feel safe and respected. ... At this point, we cannot comment further while the case against Sgt. Postell is pending."
The first incident was allegedly on May 16, 2017, while the two were working on an assignment.
“He [Postell] parked the vehicle under a bridge in the area of 16th and Westmoreland St., and indecently assaulted her,” a police report stated. “The complainant struggled with the offender, causing him to stop the assault.”
The victim allegedly reported a second incident on an unspecified date in which “the same male sexually assaulted her while at their workplace,” police said.
Postell was arrested and charged on March 2, police announced.
As for the lawsuit against Sheriff Williams, he has denied all the allegations and his office declined to comment further.