A civilian employee of the New York Police Department accused her supervisor of sexually assaulting her and threatening to push her in front of a train after their romantic relationship ended.
Ammy Ventura, 40, a property control and evidence specialist, accused NYPD Lt. Widler Lucas, 41, and the City of New York of sex discrimination, sexual harassment and hostile work environment in a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Manhattan Supreme Court.
Lucas declined to comment Wednesday. The city’s legal department said it will review the case.
The police department said it does not comment directly on a pending lawsuit, but said in a statement Wednesday that «sex discrimination is prohibited by federal, state and municipal laws, as well as by Department policies, and the New York Police Department.» York takes all allegations of such behavior seriously.» .»
He added that the department thoroughly investigates all complaints and does not tolerate discrimination in any form.
In her job, Ventura handled court evidence, cold cases and rape kits and worked in the Intake Unit at Pearson Place Warehouse, where she met Lucas in early 2020, according to the lawsuit.
Ventura and Lucas began texting in February 2021 and dating two months later, she said in the lawsuit. The two bonded over a divorce, but Ventura later learned that Lucas was not in the middle of a divorce, even though he had previously told her otherwise, the lawsuit says.
The couple’s relationship ended in September 2021 after a trip to the Dominican Republic. During the trip, he told her that he had «three other female friends with him,» the lawsuit said.
A few weeks later, Lucas sent Ventura a text message: «I can’t talk, I’m a married man,» the lawsuit said.
After the couple separated, Ventura was subjected to sexual harassment, assault and threats, the lawsuit alleges.
She «was forced to attend work and endured sexual harassment and retaliation day after day and year after year,» the lawsuit says.
In August 2022, the lawsuit alleges, Lucas forced Ventura to perform oral sex in his office in Brooklyn. The alleged sexual assault, according to the lawsuit, occurred after Lucas asked Ventura to work overtime.
She «in no way consented to this act in any way,» the lawsuit says.
Ventura was left «completely unresponsive» during the «sexual assault,» and Lucas did not even close his office door during the assault, the lawsuit alleges.
Ventura «immediately locked on her best friend for the violent sexual assault,» the lawsuit says.
About six months after their relationship ended, according to the lawsuit, Lucas accused Ventura of telling people about their sexual relationship.
The lawsuit alleged that Lucas threatened that if Ventura ever «says anything, I will kill you» and «he would push plaintiff in front of a train.»
Ventura’s attorney, John Scola, said Wednesday that the alleged conduct exemplifies the culture of the NYPD and how frivolous they are with their female employees.
Ventura’s lawsuit calls for a jury trial and calls for compensatory and punitive damages to be determined at trial.