Des Moines, IA– An Iowa man who was working as a security guard at the Coral Ridge Mall brutally shot a young woman after she accused him of sexual harassment.
KWWL reports that on Friday, June 12, 22-year old Alezander Kozak walked into the mall and gunned down 20-year-old Andrea Farrington, who was working at the Iowa Children’s Museum located in the mall. Kozak shot Farrington in the back three times, mortally wounding her.
Several reports have emerged stating that Kozak targeted Farrington because she was the latest woman to accuse him of sexually harassment. Radio station 1630 KCJJ reported that Kozak was fired earlier on the day of the shooting after several complaints of sexual harassment were filed against him; Farrington’s complaint was the most recent.
Police would not confirm it that was indeed the motive for this crime but did say that he admitted to going to the mall with intentions to shot Farrington, making it a premeditated act, according to KWWL.
After the incident one men’s rights advocate said he understood Kozak’s actions in light of the fact that sexual harassment is take far too seriously. But what this man who believes society favors women over men doesn’t understand is that the victims must meet a high bar of proof to even pursue harassment claim and this abusive behavior can adversely affect the victim and the overall productivity of a workplace.
A sexual harassment complaint can be damaging and effect a person’s employment, but generally, sexual harassment cases don’t turn into horrific acts of violence or have such shocking repercussions. This crazed young man apparently had other underlying issues going to make him shoot someone over a sexual harassment complaint. Most sexual harassment complaints are handled peacefully through negotiations or through litigation.
That isn’t to say that harassment victims who file formal complaints aren’t subjected to hostility, it just usually doesn’t manifest in such a brutal way. Workplace hostility usually manifests verbally, in the denial of benefits or the complainant being let go, but it doesn’t usually cost a person their life. Though the hostility can become worse overtime, it won’t escalate or be a liability if an employer addresses it and takes action to prevent it.
Unbelievably, some employers don’t take steps to stop sexual harassment or retaliation, allowing the victim to pursue them for fostering a hostile work environment. If you have been subjected to sexual harassment and your employers is not standing up for your rights or shielding you from this abusive behavior, you are urged to contact a sexual harassment attorney near your Iowa location.