Hilco Real Estate 6-2024

Plaintiffs, Collin County reach $1.75 million settlement in lawsuit

by | Apr 18, 2023 | Latest

After reaching a settlement in mediation in February, the terms of a settlement agreement have been reached in a lawsuit filed between six current and former employees and Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis, First Assistant District Attorney Bill Wirskye and the county judge and county commissioners.

The terms of the $1.75 million settlement were made public after the Collin County Commissioners Court approved an item during their Monday, April 17, meeting acknowledging their intent to sign it. County spokesperson Tim Wyatt said the sum would be paid from the county’s insurance fund.

Filed in October 2022, the lawsuit filed by the county’s top and deputy investigators alleged Willis making repeated untoward and unwanted comments, inappropriately touching employees and propositioning certain individuals. It also accused Wirskye of targeting female employees and fostering a toxic workplace.

“These individuals care very deeply for each other’s well-being,” said plaintiffs’ attorney Jeffrey Simon in an April 17 news release. “That support gave them the courage to stand up for themselves, their rights, and those of their colleagues.”

In addition to Willis and Wirskye, the suit named County Judge Chris Hill and county commissioners Duncan Webb, Susan Fletcher, Darrell Hale and Cheryl Williams and accused them of knowing of and covering up the misconduct.

The $1.75 million settlement will be split equally between each of the six plaintiffs in the case, Simon said in the release. 

Rogge Dunn, Willis’ attorney in the case, said terms of the settlement also mean the employees working for the county at the time of the suit will resign. They will also drop their sexual harassment complaints that had been filed around the time of the federal filing in October.

“The settlement allows DA Willis and his office to now focus 100% of their energy on doing the job they love on behalf of Collin County’s citizens,” Dunn said.

Throughout the timeline of the suit, Willis denied any wrongdoing, labeling the claims made as “false, defamatory and outrageous.” 

“From the moment I released just a portion of the compelling evidence of my innocence at my press conference, it was inevitable that these claims would have to be dismissed, either by the plaintiffs or by the judge,” Willis said.” This case only settled because an insurance company decided it was cheaper to settle now than pay lawyers to defend the case.”

He was also re-elected in November after running unopposed. Willis first took charge as the district attorney in 2011 and holds the power to appoint certain officials under him, such as Wirskye.

His wife, Jill, is an elected judge in Collin County who also won re-election in November after running unopposed.

Wirskye has also denied the claims and labeled the lawsuit as “politically timed and motivated.” He did not respond to a request for comment.

According to the lawsuit, the county commissioners had the ability to take action against Willis and Wirskye, but “chose to look the other way.”

Subscribe RH Love

0 Comments

NTMWD Plant Smart 2024

Related News

Summer Kickoff party is Friday

Summer Kickoff party is Friday

Boocoos the clown will be back for the Summer Kickoff party Friday, June 7 outside the Smith Public Library. Summer programming for the city of Wylie will kick off with an annual outdoor event co-hosted by the library and rec center Friday. The Summer Kickoff party...

read more
City crews aided by volunteers after storm

City crews aided by volunteers after storm

A billboard on highway 78 near Ballard Avenue did not weather the Tuesday, May 28 storm too well.. Wylie has had its fair share of dramatic and damaging weather events over the years, but thankfully the city wasn’t hit as hard by last week’s severe storm as other...

read more
Scout honored, Taste of Wylie proceeds distributed

Scout honored, Taste of Wylie proceeds distributed

Mayor Matthew Porter issued Taste of Wylie proceeds to 5 Loaves Food Pantry, Amazing Grace, Christian Care Center and Hope for the Cities at the Tuesday, May 28, council meeting. Courtesy city of Wylie Mayor Matthew Porter started last week’s regular council meeting...

read more
Child killed in crash

Child killed in crash

Wylie police are investigating a fatality crash involving a five-year-old boy. According to a statement released by WPD, units from Wylie police and fire responded to a motor vehicle crash at Glen Knoll Mobile Home Park at 6:31 p.m. Wednesday, May 29. The reporting...

read more
Inaugural event planned for local nonprofit

Inaugural event planned for local nonprofit

In-Sync Exotics, a renowned sanctuary for rescued exotic felines, is hosting its inaugural fundraising gala, “Whisker Wishes - Making Miracles Happen,” at 6 p.m. Saturday, June 8, at The Venue at Boyd Farms in Lavon.  This event marks a significant milestone for...

read more
Final budget update presented

Final budget update presented

A groundbreaking ceremony for Kreymer Elementary, the district’s newest school scheduled to open at Brown Street and Springdale Way in 2025, was held on Monday, May 20.  A few hours after a groundbreaking ceremony for Kreymer Elementary, the district’s newest school...

read more
WEHS graduates complete journey

WEHS graduates complete journey

Wylie East Class of 2024 graduates celebrate the end of their high school careers Saturday, May 25 at CUTX Event Center in Allen with the traditional streamer toss. On a busy Memorial Day weekend honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice, family, friends, staff...

read more
WHS Class of 2024 celebrate milestone

WHS Class of 2024 celebrate milestone

Wylie High Class of 2024 graduates, 691 of them, toss celebratory streamers in the air signaling the end of high school Saturday, May 25 at the event center in Allen. The Wylie High School Class of 2024 marked a milestone Saturday evening as proud parents, teachers,...

read more
Order photos