Sexual Harassment in Criminal Justice Organizations: A Legal Analysis

Sue Carter Collins, Georgia State University
Michael S. Vaughn, Georgia State University

This paper will focus on sexual harassment in criminal justice agencies from a legal perspective. The paper will consist of four basic parts. First, the paper will point out the problem of sexual harassment in criminal justice agencies, surveying the criminal justice/social science literature. Second, the paper will briefly describe the sexual harassment cases from the United States Supreme Court, discussing the standards of liability as articulated by the Court. The third part of the paper will flush out the standards of liability by looking at lower federal (U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. District Courts) court decisions on sexual harassment that specifically focus on criminal justice agencies (police, corrections, probation, juvenile). Here, trends in the law will be identified, and the case law will be categorized according to major topical areas. In the fourth part, the conclusion, the paper will point out how lower court interpretation of U.S. Supreme Court principles give meaning to the law. Polich implications flowing from U.S. Supreme Court and lower court decisions in criminal justice agencies and will be specified.

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Updated 05/20/2006