Former MTS employee allegedly assaulted by Nathan Fletcher speaks out

Former MTS employee allegedly assaulted by Nathan Fletcher speaks out

SAN DIEGO — The former Metropolitan Transit System employee that accused Supervisor Nathan Fletcher of sexual assault has spoken out for the first time since her allegations were made public in a lawsuit filing late last month.

Grecia Figueroa, who worked as a public relations specialist for the transportation agency until earlier this year, expressed frustration for how she has been treated since coming forward with her allegations in a blog post published on Saturday.

“It’s no wonder people feel they’ll be judged when speaking up about sexual harassment, if seeking vindication of one’s own rights leads them to be called a liar, a mistress, a gold digger, and far worse names,” Figueroa wrote.

She did not directly address Fletcher or the lawsuit in the post.

In her statement, she instead lamented about how the hostility directed to her exemplifies the kinds of responses that often keep people quiet about sexual harassment.

Formal action is infrequently taken after individuals experience harassment: according to estimates from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, roughly three out of four people do not report harassing conduct to superiors.

“It’s no wonder women feel threatened to come forward,” Figueroa said of these statistics. “Because even other women will label the situation a ‘salacious scandal’ before a single piece of evidence has hit the courtroom.”

“Choosing to come forward is not an easy feat, and it should be respected,” she continued.

The full statement from Figueroa can be found here.

Figueroa’s lawsuit was first made public on Mar. 29, several days after Fletcher had announced that he would be suspending his State Senate campaign to enter in-patient treatment for alcohol abuse and post-traumatic stress.

The nearly 30-page complaint detailed at least two instances of sexual assault by the Supervisor in his role as chairman of the MTS Board of Directors. MTS was also named as a defendant in the case.

Less than one day after the complaint was made public, FOX 5 learned of similar claims from a 27-year-old woman, who said that Fletcher harassed her in 2015 while she was an intern at his non-profit for veterans.

Fletcher has denied the allegations of sexual misconduct from both the women.

He did, however, admit to engaging in a sexual relationship with Figueroa in a statement released on Mar. 29 that announced her lawsuit filing, arguing that the interactions were consensual.

“I have not done the things they are alleging, but I did violate the basic trust and loyalty of my marriage,” Fletcher wrote in the statement.

Nonetheless, Fletcher has announced that he would be resigning from his office, effective at the end of his medical leave. The Board of Supervisors will be meeting on Tuesday to determine next steps for filling the seat.

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