Jessamine County's human resource director Evelyn Smith has been accused of assaulting an employee, according to a criminal complaint and formal grievance obtained by The Journal.
Emergency 911 dispatcher Michael Hurst filed a criminal complaint with the county attorney's office after he said he was attacked by Smith on Friday, May 25 in the court house.
Hurst alleges the attack is a retaliation for his wife's testimony in an ongoing unemployment hearing and sexual harassment claim.
On Smith's behalf, county attorney Brian Goettl said she is denying all allegations.
"I don't have any comment on the criminal complaint at this point." Goettl said. "A special prosecutor has been secured and will deal with that."
In the criminal complaint, Hurst states he and his wife, Katherine, went to see Smith in her office concerning retirement forms. According to the statement, Katherine Hurst was seeking paperwork from the Kentucky Retirement System which they believed to have been sent to Smith on May 3 and were told had been completed.
When they were informed the paperwork was not finished, Michael Hurst said to his wife "that's okay, let's go see the judge."
This is when Smith allegedly became enraged and grabbed Michael Hurst's right arm "very tightly, poking" him with her nails. As he tried to pull away she also tore his shirt, the complaint states.
Hurst's complaint states his wife stepped between them to keep Smith from grabbing him again. They then went to Judge-Executive Neal Cassity's office, who was not in at the time. They called the Nicholasville Police Department and were advised to file a criminal complaint in the county attorney's office.
Hurst states he waited to hear from Cassity and when he did not after several days, he filed a grievance in the judge's office on May 29 which alleged the same events, but in greater detail.
"As far as the formal grievance, at a minimum this was prepared in consultation with the plaintiffs' attorney," Goettl said. "Combined with (Hurst's) threat to sue the county, we are preparing for litigation."
In the grievance, Hurst states the Smith's assault was "clearly a direct retaliation" for his support in the former Jessamine County EMS Lt. Tina Griggs' unemployment hearings and claims of sexual harassment against the county's EMS chief Jerry Domidion.
During those hearings, both Smith and Katherine Hurst have been present.
Hurst claims the attack on him and the "refusal to complete his wife's retirement paperwork" stems from Katherine's testimony during those hearing early that week supporting Griggs' accusations.
The judge-executive's office issued a response to Hurst's formal grievance May 31, stating it does "not recognize" it as a legitimate grievance per the Jessamine County Administrative Manual.
The reason given is that a grievance is defined as "an employee's expressed dissatisfaction with an issue relating to his/her job," on Page 21 of the manual.
The response went on to state, "The events that transpired on the property of the Jessamine County Fiscal County on or about May 25, 2012 between Evelyn Smith and yourself are under investigation. Once the investigation has been completed (Cassity) will take the appropriate disciplinary actions."