CAMDEN COUNTY, Mo. — A former Camden County Sheriff’s Deputy is suing the sheriff’s office, Sheriff Tony Helms, and former Captain Chris Twitchel for discrimination and sexual harassment.

The lawsuit stated an alleged history of sexual harassment and misbehavior by Twitchel. According to the lawsuit, Twitchel was a deputy during Sheriff Dwight Franklin’s administration and was under investigation for an alleged sexual relationship with an informant.

Twitchel was given the choice to resign or an investigation would be launched. Twitchel decided to resign, according to the civil suit. However, when Helms defeated Franklin in the 2016 election Helms rehired Twitchel and gave him the rank of Captain.

Along with sexual harassment, the lawsuit claims, “From January 1,  2017-February 25, 2020, at least 13 male deputies were promoted and zero females were promoted. During this time, only two openings were posted via email, both for the same Corporal rank held by Plaintiff… Upon information and belief, male employees were generally better compensated.”

The Plaintiff is requesting the following:

  • A review of the reasons why she was not promoted and an order that the defendants did not comply with federal law regarding her promotion.
  • Training for all managers regarding sex discrimination, and retaliation, and review of Defendant Camden County Sheriff’s Department’s policy regarding discrimination and retaliation.
  • Training on how to prevent bias from impeding the advancement of women and those who report sexual harassment in the workplace.
  • The forbidding of future violations of Title VII, the First Amendment, and the Equal Protection of the Fourteenth Amendment and other laws prohibiting sex discrimination and retaliation in the workplace
  • The adoption of policies aimed at preventing and remedying any future violations that may occur, including an effective reporting procedure and effective investigation procedures that prevent retaliation.
  • Notification of employees of the violation and remedy.
  • Plaintiff is also seeking monetary relief.

KOLR10 reached out to Helm, Twitchel, and the attorney representing them but did not receive a response as of 11:45 a.m. Wednesday, April 13, 2022.