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$2,500 Settlement for Terminated BOP Employee

The federal Bureau of Prisons paid $2,500 to settle a civil rights action brought by a terminated employee.

Pamela M. Saterdalen alleged that between December 1, 1995, and August 16, 1996, she was subjected to violations of her civil rights while employed as a guard at Federal Medical Center in Rochester, Minnesota.

The matter stemmed around an investigation into Saterdalen having extra-marital affairs with supervisory officials and co-workers.  A list of 10 men was produced, naming men she allegedly had sex with.  It was later admitted “we may have [had] a little liberty with some of the names.”

In the face of a potential investigation that would “ruin her career,” Saterdalen was forced to make a decision to resign or face the investigation prior to leaving a meeting with her commanding officer and the Human Resources Manager.  Saterdalen resigned but was subsequently allowed to revoke the resignation after consulting with an attorney.

She was ordered to return to work, but refused until she had a hearing on the issues of discrimination and unlawful employment action.  She was subsequently terminated for refusing to cooperate in an official investigation, absent without leave, and engaging in outside employment without prior approval.  The investigation revealed she had consensual sexual relations with three men on the list, who were never disciplined, and non-consensual relations with another who resigned.

Represented by Minneapolis attorneys Chad McKinney and Michael H. Donohue, Saterdalen filed her 13 count complaint on December 10, 1997.  The parties reached a $2,500 settlement on August 16, 1999.  See: Saterdalen v. United States, USDC, D. Minnesota, Case No 97-2755.

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Related legal case

Saterdalen v. United States