Ernst & Young Settles With Partner Who Claimed She Was Groped

(Bloomberg) -- An Ernst & Young Global Limited partner who claimed she was groped by a colleague in front of other employees at Walt Disney World Resort has reached a settlement with the company.

Jessica Casucci agreed to leave the company as part of a "fair and equitable confidential settlement," her attorney Michael Willemin said in a statement. Casucci, who worked in the company’s tax division, alleged in a complaint filed last month with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that E&Y failed to act after she reported the 2015 incident.

"We are pleased to have reached this resolution," John La Place, a spokesman for E&Y said in an email.

Casucci alleged she was at a dueling piano restaurant called Jellyrolls at the resort in June 2015 when another partner, John Martinkat, "groped and squeezed Ms. Casucci’s rear end with both hands," "grabbed and aggressively squeezed her breasts," and then propositioned her, according to her complaint. The two were attending a conference in Orlando with other E&Y employees.

Over the past year almost every industry has been forced to reckon with sexual harassment and gender discrimination, following revelations from dozens of actresses recounting decades of sexual misconduct at the hands of Harvey Weinstein, sparking the #MeToo movement -- a social media designation that aims to show how widespread sexual harassment is.

Martinkat initially received "little or no discipline" for his behavior, while Casucci was forced to abandon client relationships to avoid working with him, she claimed in her complaint. Martinkat has since been fired, La Place said. He couldn’t be reached for comment.

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