The 4 Steps to Take if Your Coworker Accused You of Sexual Harassment

Let’s say one day you walk into work and hear that a coworker of yours filed a complaint that you had sexually harassed them. You may start going through your coworkers in your mind and are unsure who could have filed such an accusation. Your boss, the human resources department, and perhaps even a handful of other coworkers may have heard about the supposed incident. You may understandably feel embarrassed and concerned about your future career at that company.

One of the first things you must do after hearing this news is consult with an attorney who is experienced in criminal defense and sexual harassment cases. This article will go over the four steps to take if your coworkers have accused you of sexual harassment: 

#1 Do Not Approach Your Coworker
Your first gut reaction may be to walk up to your coworker and ask what happened, and you may even feel compelled to apologize even though you didn’t do anything wrong. Perhaps you just want to amend the situation. However, approaching him or her during this time may only make matters so much worse. In fact, whatever you do say to your coworker — whether through email, in person, text, phone call, or voicemail — may be used against you at a later time. It’s best to avoid them at all costs. If they reach out to you to talk, do not respond and let your attorney know. 

#2 Speak with an Attorney
When meeting with a sex crimes attorney, like a top sex crimes attorney in DC, about the situation, you have to be forthcoming about the details of the incident. It is your attorney’s job to protect you and come to your defense. If you keep any details out due to fear of judgement or getting in further trouble, this may only catch up with you in the end if it is brought up in court. Your attorney cannot protect you if they are surprised with details of your case after hearing from other parties.  

#3 Write Down Your Version of the Story
Your mind may be reeling with thoughts about your career future and the repercussions you may face if found guilty of the sexual harassment accusation. Start by writing down your version of the story to help clear your mind and trigger your memory. Share this with your attorney so they understand your perspective in the incident that transpired and can build a defense based on that information. 

#4 Provide Witnesses or an Alibi
If your coworker claims that an incident occurred at a certain date and time and you know you were at another location, then you have to reach out to witnesses for an alibi. You need people who can attest to your whereabouts when the supposed sexual harassment incident happened. For instance, if you knew you were in a meeting at the time, your attorney can contact the people you were speaking with and ask for a statement that shows you were there. 

Thanks to The Lawfirm of Frederick J. Brynn, P.C. for their insight into what to do if you were accused of sexual assault in the workplace.