Police

Lawsuit Claims Sheriff Union Leader Assaulted, Took Photos of Naked, Unconscious Worker

Photo by Jason Lawrence
The former treasurer of the Broward Deputy Sheriffs Association union is facing a lawsuit that claims he sexually assaulted an incapacitated union member on a work trip in Nevada.

In the lawsuit filed in Broward County on November 2, the alleged victim says the union leader, Frank Voudy, accosted her in her Las Vegas hotel room, and that she was released from the union months later after she complained about the incident and ongoing harassment by Voudy.

The plaintiff, whose name is not disclosed in the court file, claims the assault took place while she and Voudy were in Nevada for a law enforcement conference in May 2021. She says that while she was incapacitated, Voudy took advantage of her, snapped pictures of her naked body, and later showed the images to his Florida coworkers.

The woman was working under Voudy as a labor and relations agent for the Broward Deputy Sheriffs Association, Local 6020 branch of the International Union of Police Associations, according to the complaint. She suspects she was given a "sedative or intoxicating substance" in the time leading up to the assault, the lawsuit alleges.

"Upon learning of Voudy's egregious actions, the plaintiff was distraught, shocked, and beyond humiliated," the lawsuit states. "At no point in time did plaintiff express any romantic interest in Voudy."

Several weeks after the alleged incident, the plaintiff reported it to the Las Vegas Metro Police Department, whose investigation is ongoing, according to court documents. She says she also reported the encounter to the local union branch, but that "it took no action."

The local union branch and International Union of Police Associations are named as defendants in the lawsuit alongside Voudy.

The lawsuit claims that after the plaintiff and Voudy returned to Florida, he began harassing her by contacting her on her personal cellphone and Facebook. Around the time the plaintiff was helping her mother recover from surgery, the lawsuit alleges, Voudy sent the plaintiff a graphic email and then implored her to delete it.

"Plaintiff repeatedly asked Voudy to stop contacting her other than for work purposes, but Voudy's behavior continued," the lawsuit says. "Voudy began involving himself into Plaintiff's job duties that were unrelated to his job duties so that [she] would be forced to work with him."

The lawsuit alleges that the victim refused to go into the office and opted to work remotely because of Voudy's conduct. In response, the lawsuit asserts, Voudy required mandatory in-person meetings and scheduled meetings with the plaintiff at earlier times before other employees arrived because he "wanted 'alone time' with her."

In early October 2021, the plaintiff says, Voudy went into her office and left a $150 gift card to Morton's steakhouse along with an envelope addressed to her daughter that contained a police "morale patch" for Voudy's district and shift.

The union discharged the woman in early January 2022 in retaliation "for seeking to assert her right to be free from harassment [and] discrimination," the lawsuit states.

Her attorney, Adriana Alcalde, says the termination was a final blow to the victim after she endured months of humiliation and trauma.

"She dedicated her life working for the union and she believed in the union. When they let her down at her lowest moment, it was especially crushing," Alcalde tells New Times.

Counsel for the union has not responded to New Times' request for comment.

According to the Broward Sheriff's Office, Voudy is still employed as a deputy. He has worked for the sheriff's office since the late 1990s.
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Naomi Feinstein is a fellow at Miami New Times. She spent the last year in New York City getting her master’s degree at the Columbia School of Journalism. She is also a proud alum of the University of Miami.
Contact: Naomi Feinstein

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