Former Kings staffer alleges wrongful termination, sexual harassment in a lawsuit

According to a report from Sam Stanton of the Sacramento Bee, a former employee of the Sacramento Kings is suing the team, alleging that they were wrongfully terminated after coming forward about sexual harassment at the hands of former Stockton Kings assistant coach Akachi Okugo and a player who is not specifically named in the suit.

The former staffer claims in the lawsuit that after coming forward about the harassment — which allegedly happened during a summer league road trip in 2021 and was witnessed by multiple other staff members, including Stockton Kings head coach Bobby Jackson — they were told by Stacy Wegzyn, the Kings vice president for human resources, that their complaint “did not need to be escalated.”

A few months later, in October of 2021, the plaintiff alleges that their vehicle was broken into and stolen from at the team’s training facility. According to the lawsuit, this led to them telling Wegzyn that they no longer felt safe in the workplace, and they were given permission to work remotely.

After Okugo’s departure, the former employee alleges that the Kings asked them to start traveling with the team again. Once back in the workplace, the suit states they were receiving “unwanted attention, including jealous remarks and intimidation, from a team member.”

In March of 2022, the plaintiff reported the issue to Stockton Kings General Manager Paul Johnson, who again directed them to Wegzyn and human resources. Wegzyn’s response was that she would have Johnson discuss the issue with the player, a talk during which Johnson claimed revealed the former staffer’s identity to the player.

On April 11, Wegzyn and Kings General Manager Monte McNair met with the plaintiff to inform them that they were being fired, according to the lawsuit.

Okugo — who is not named as a defendant in the suit — did not respond to the Bee’s requests for comment. The Kings’ labor and employment lawyer, Terry Wills, said in a statement that “the accusations of wrongdoing are false and will be addressed through the appropriate legal process.”

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