* Floodgates are now open…
A former high-ranking employee for Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford dropped bombshell allegations in federal court Monday – charging that Rutherford sexually harassed him and used his state office to further his political aspirations.
The employee, Ed Michalowski, charged that Rutherford has made unwanted sexual advances against him since 2011. In one instance, Michalowski claims that in 2011 Rutherford held an overnight office retreat at Rutherford’s Pontiac home, entered Michalowski’s bedroom and grabbed his genitals.
Michalowski, 43, served as Rutherford’s Director of Community Affairs and Marketing. He resigned last week, telling the Sun-Times he felt intimidated by a news conference Rutherford held promising to combat the allegations while flanked by former federal agents. […]
In August of 2011, at D.H. Brown’s, a bar in Springfield, Michalowski alleges that Rutherford approached him and said: “If you go home with me you can have anything you want in the office.”
Michalowski further alleges that Rutherford demanded that he go through his personal list of past clients and ask them to donate to Rutherford’s campaign fund.
Michalowski’s attorney said on Monday that her client kept some text messages as corroboration but concedes there were likely no witnesses to the alleged incidents.
Michalowski worked for the secretary of state’s office before Rutherford hired him.
*** UPDATE *** Rutherford spokesperson Judy Pardonnet told Eric Zorn this today…
I would say the chances of anyone else coming forward is very unlikely.
Denial runs awful deep in that office.
*** UPDATE 2 *** The lawsuit can be read by clicking here.
*** UPDATE 3 *** From Rutherford’s office…
Treasurer Rutherford will hold a media availability this afternoon to address an ex-employee’s complaint.
Date: Monday, February 10, 2014
Time: 4:30 p.m.
Location: Hyatt Regency, 1800 E. Golf Rd., Schaumburg