A sexual harassment investigation into a general manager’s conduct at a Wendy’s location in Iron Mountain is underway.
The alleged victim did not want her name or face to be used in our piece.
A 21-year-old Wendy’s crew member has filed a sexual harassment complaint with the Iron Mountain Police against her former boss.
In her statement to police she highlights two incidents: one that occurred in the workplace on April 5th, and one that took place at a local bar the following day.
The first incident alleges physical and verbal sexual abuse. The second incident involved a male general manager and a female manager in training. The pair reportedly asked her to get drinks with them after a company WrestleMania party fell through.
During their time at the bar, both the male and female in question allegedly made sexual advances.
“(Female’s name withheld) had kept saying to me that night, ‘Oh, if you have my back the way I’ll have yours, depending on how things play out tonight, you can be manager too.’ At first, I didn’t know what she meant by that until after they were touching each other and all that happened. They offered me and kept insisting to go to a hotel; propositioning me for sexual favors to become a manager,” noted the alleged victim. “I had them bring me home and I locked the door as soon as I got in. I had a couple of my friends go out and get rid of them. I immediately called my assistant manager and reported it to her. I talked to another manager of mine that very night. They came over. We had a little pow-wow. I did discuss with them what had happened and what I should do because I was really scared.”
The following day she filed a police report and contacted corporate officials to inform them about what had happened.
She says they responded shortly after, assuring her that he had been terminated.
“He hadn’t been in and everything, we thought, was smooth sailing. We were told to call the police if the person had shown up again,” continued the alleged victim. “Two days ago, while I was working, he strolled in out of uniform and was acting as if nothing happened. We didn’t even get a call from our higher-ups. We didn’t get a call from our GM telling us that he would just be there. I was in the middle of working. We ended up having the cops come there. The police officer that I filed my report with came up and tried to get to the bottom of the situation. My higher-ups talked to him. As they were talking to him, they told him they had reinstated the person who had sexually harassed me. He looked over at me at that moment and he gave me an evil smirk. I was traumatized. I’ve not been able to eat or sleep for the past week. He’s driven past my house. I live within walking distance of Wendy’s. I live in view of it. I don’t feel safe. I didn’t feel safe coming forward and now that I know they don’t want to do anything about it, that they don’t believe that it happened because they failed to protect me, I want something to be done about this. It’s not happened to only me. There are other women there that have had the same thing happen to them. There are witnesses. There are men who can corroborate things that have happened in that workplace. It can’t just get swept under the rug.”
“Yeah, I’ve actually seen him make sexual references to the girls and stuff like that, about staying down there longer and stuff while they are reaching around him to grab something from the salad cooler or try to get around because Wendy’s is not that big. It’s a small area and you have to be close to everybody but I imagine that is why he takes the opportunity to do that to the girls because he thinks it is a funny thing and it’s not. It just makes us feel uncomfortable and there is even male employees that he has ended up grabbing, threatening saying he is going to knock you out and all this stuff. He just doesn’t know when to stop and I happen to be one of 11 employees who quit because it even made me feel uncomfortable and it’s not appreciated and I don’t want to work in a place like that.”
“I apparently was the only one that has come forward in the last seven years but everyone else who had come forward before that was told to, quote/unquote to kick him in the (Beep). Yeah, that is how it was handled by the previous GM’s in the past.”
We contacted Wendy’s corporate office.
They responded by saying, “the Iron Mountain restaurant is operated by an independent Wendy’s franchisee. Since it is not a Company-operated restaurant, you need to reach out to the franchisee regarding this situation and the personnel policies for his organization. As a Company, Wendy’s does not tolerate harassment of any kind. We also encourage employees in our Company-owned restaurants and at all levels of our organization to use the 24-hour, confidential hotline at any time, if they have workplace issues or ethical concerns.”
Our attempts to contact the GM in question at his Wendy’s location were not returned.
The owner and his consultant referred our station to their lawyer last week, who said they had no comment other than, “our belief, based upon the investigation that has taken place so far, is that the accusations are unmerited.”