April 24, 2014

Elyria
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Report: Matus committed some, but not all, of misconduct allegations

ELYRIA — A neutral third party has determined that suspended Lorain County General Health District Medical Director Paul Matus committed some, but not all, of the misconduct allegations leveled against him.

Matus

The report, released today, indicates that Matus engaged in misconduct by making “derogatory” comments about female employees who accused him of sexual harassment, that he improperly contacted the ex-husband of one woman to inquire about the sexual harassment investigation and that he refused to turn over documents showing sexually-charged comments on Facebook and Twitter by other Health District employees.

An investigation last year determined that Matus’ behavior toward female Health District employees did not rise to the level of sexual harassment.

Frank Hatfield, the third party who heard evidence against Matus during a 9-hour hearing in February, concluded that Matus didn’t commit four other violations district officials had made against him, including that he made false allegations against former Health Commissioner Ken Pearce and other employees, that he falsely accused the Health Board of trying to “railroad” him, that he tried to eavesdrop on a Health Board executive session and that he refused to take sensitivity training.

For instance, Hatfield wrote that Matus expressed his opinion that he was being railroaded, which appeared to have been based on the fact that he was never interviewed about the sexual harassment allegations against him and never given a copy of the completed investigative report.

The Health Board will now have to make a determination of what, if any, punishment Matus, the county’s former coroner, should face.

Read Wednesday’s Chronicle for more on this story.