Lawsuit alleges sexual harassment at Excelsior House - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Lawsuit alleges sexual harassment at Excelsior House

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 Three former residents of a local facility for recovering addicts have filed suit against its operators alleging sexual harassment.

And their attorney is asking a criminal investigation be opened.

Excelsior House at 3740 Kirkman Street is a place for men with drug or alcohol addictions to come to make a transition to clean living.  But three young men who recently lived there are suing the business, its owner and manager for alleged sexual harassment.

 Attorney Ron Richard says the young men suffered severe, repeated unwanted sexual advances.

"The owner of the house is male.  The house manager is male, albeit, an active transvestite and looks like a female at times and the harassment involves physical touching, grabbing, even in one case an unwanted kiss," said Richard.

 Richard says they have documentary evidence of the allegations including audio recordings and text messages.  Richard furnished us with two sexually explicit text messages allegedly from the house manager.
 
"Text messages asking for sex, requesting sex, demanding sexual favors, request for voyeuristic activity where these individuals request sex acts be performed on them," said Richard.

 In some cases Richard says the young men were offered free rent in exchange for a requested sexual act.   Richard say the young men didn't speak out sooner because they feared retaliation that could worsen their situations with law enforcement and the court.

"Sadly the individuals being harassed and who these acts are being perpetrated on are in a position where they're scared to come forward for fear of having their program revoked and getting them in further trouble both with the law and failing to complete their program,"said Richard.

Besides seeking damages, Richard says they are asking that a criminal case be opened.

"What they've done is damage everyone that they've done this to or committed these acts upon.  You have damaged their trust, their ability to trust and you certainly  have done it to some of the most vulnerable people that society has.  Obviously I always seek damages in any litigation, and we also seek to do what we need to do to make sure this never happens again," said Richard.

 We contacted the calcasieu sheriff's department and district attorney's office who say they have not yet received Richard's request for a criminal investigation.
 
We attempted to reach those being sued through attorney Billy Loftin.  He is the registered agent for Excelsior--which means he will be the one officially served with the lawsuit.

He says he has not received it or been hired to represent the named defendants and asks to review the suit before commenting on it. 

To read the lawsuit click here.

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