CARSON CITY – A former Capitol Police sergeant who engaged in sexual harassment and failed to respond to harassment by other officers directed at a female colleague has had his firing upheld by a state hearing officer.
In a decision released Friday, the termination of Edward “Mike” Rubio by the state Department of Public Safety was upheld by Hearing Officer Patty Cafferata for harassment directed at Alice Valdez, hired to work at the Governor’s Mansion in December 2010.
“Rubio sexually harassed Valdez, and as her supervisor, he permitted two other officers to also discriminate and sexually harass her,” Cafferata said. “He failed to document her complaints, stop their misconduct or report these officers to his supervisor or the Human Resources Department as required by the state’s policies.”
Valdez testified at Rubio’s hearing that Officer Christian Aranyos made vulgar remarks to her, including a statement to the effect that he wanted to bend her over a desk and have his way with her.
After reporting the incident to Rubio, Valdez said he replied: “Did I ever tell you about the time I watched a pornographic movie with another female officer in Douglas County?”
Officer William Walker also made offensive comments about Valdez, according to her testimony.
When Rubio failed to act on her complaints, Valdez said she notified Capitol Police Chief Jerome Tushbant, who recommended Rubio be fired.
“Rubio and Aranyos’ indecent and suggestive comments are shocking and are violations of (a state rule) that prohibits employees from engaging in sexual harassment,” Cafferata said.
Contact Capital Bureau reporter Sean Whaley at email@example.com or 775-687-3900. Follow him on Twitter @seanw801.