Jury awards dental assistant $700K in sexual misconduct case against owner dentist

A jury recently awarded a Washington dental assistant over $700,000 in her case against a dental practice owner accused of sexual misconduct and shorting her pay, The Daily News reported Oct. 12. 

During a 4-day trial, several employees of former Lower Columbia Oral Health in Longview, Wash., detailed how Sam Wise, DDS, engaged in sexual misconduct and harassment. One company policy reportedly stated that employees could not "consider [Wise’s] statements/behaviors inappropriate, offensive or harassment." Employees also had to waive their rights to file a lawsuit against Dr. Wise or the practice. 

Darci Cooper, a former dental assistant at the practice, sued Dr. Wise after she was fired. The jury found that Dr. Wise illegally fired Ms. Cooper after she reported him to the state for engaging in a hostile work environment, violating contracts and failing to pay her.

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