Former Latta police chief files lawsuit against town, town administrator

Pee Dee

LATTA, S.C. (WBTW) — A former Latta, S.C., police chief filed a lawsuit Thursday against the town and a town administrator after she was fired in 2016.

The 18-page lawsuit claims Crystal Moore was retaliated against for reporting sexual harassment by a town employee. Moore said she was doing her job by requesting the Dillon County Sheriff’s Office create a police report for the incident.

The lawsuit claims Moore suffered emotional distress caused by Town Administrator Jarrett Taylor. Moore also claims the town refused to do anything to prevent harassment and retaliation against her, according to the lawsuit.

At the time she was fired, after a suspension, Moore released the following statement:

This is a difficult situation and I want to share with those closest to me before this becomes public. I was fired as the Chief of Police of Latta tonight. I am shocked and angered especially in light of my cancer diagnosis and the struggle that has put me and my family through. But this won’t stop me from serving the people of Latta or Dillon County. This is a tough time for all of us, but I know justice will prevail. Please keep me and my family in your prayers during this difficult time.

News13 obtained the disciplinary action reports from the Town of Latta, explaining Moore’s suspension. According to the documents, Moore was suspended for failing to inform supervisors of a sexual harassment claim, revealing an officer’s salary at a public meeting, and failing to file vehicle reports.

Taylor documents that Moore failed to follow proper procedure in notifying town leaders when a town employee claimed she was sexually harassed by her supervisor. The written reprimand says Moore did not attempt to contact the town assistant administrator or her two immediate supervisors before calling the Dillon County Sheriff’s Office to take over the sexual harassment claim and investigation.

Moore is seeking unspecified damages, attorneys’ fees, and other expenses. She is also requesting a jury trial.

When reached for comment by News13, Taylor said neither he or the town have been served the lawsuit yet.

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