Lincoln County Sheriff faces sexual harassment and assault complaint

2012-09-15T00:30:00Z 2012-09-15T08:46:09Z Lincoln County Sheriff faces sexual harassment and assault complaintBY VALERIE SCHREMP HAHN • vhahn@post-dispatch.com >314-340-8246 stltoday.com

LINCOLN COUNTY • A female Lincoln County Sheriff's Department deputy is accusing the sheriff of sexual harassment and assault, and now the Missouri Highway Patrol is investigating.

Sheriff Mike Krigbaum received a letter this week that the accuser filed with the Missouri Commission on Human Rights, said Krigbaum's attorney, Al Watkins. Krigbaum immediately contacted the highway patrol to investigate the allegations and is cooperating with them.

"He is categorically denying any behavior which would approach or even smell like criminality," said Watkins. Krigbaum received the letter on Thursday.

The woman intends to file a lawsuit, Watkins said. She accused Krigbaum of sexually harassing her and assaulting her by not allowing her to leave a room, Watkins said. Krigbaum admits sending texts to her but Watkins said they amounted little more than “harmless seventh grade boy talk" and nothing was inappropriate.

Krigbaum is running for reelection in November. Watkins said the woman has made similar claims against other law enforcement agencies in the state.

“He's had 30-plus years of unblemished service in law enforcement,” he said, “and fully anticipates this is something he'll have to address and deal with in court.”

The woman could not immediately be reached for comment Friday.

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