Commissioners vote to settle claims against county, sheriff’s office

El Paso County Sheriff Car

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — El Paso County commissioners have voted to settle claims brought against the county, the sheriff’s office, former sheriff Terry Maketa, and former undersheriff Paula Presley.

The claims were filed by two employees of the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office. Sgts. Charles Kull and Emory Gerhart resigned in December 2013, then sued, citing loss of income and benefits because of a hostile work environment.

The settlements add up to about $158,000 in lost wages and another $40,000 in taxes and benefits.

The lost wages will be paid from the sheriff’s office’s salary and compensation funds budget.

Gerhart went back to work shortly after Sheriff Bill Elder took office earlier this year.

The proposed settlement for Kull includes an offer to reinstate him. He’s expected to be back to work this month.

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