Separate cases alleging sexual harassment and theft of office property settled in mutual agreement
Two lawsuits brought by competing Stardock staff members have been settled without further court proceedings. And one of them has written a letter of apology to the studio for her involvement.
Alexandra Miseta filed the first lawsuit against Stardock CEO Brad Wardell in December 2010, alleging that Wardell sexually harassed her in what she descried as a “hostile work environment”. That lawsuit was dismissed on Monday, September 23rd.
The second lawsuit, dismissed on Friday, September 20th, was filed by Wardell against Miseta in August 2012, and alleged that she stole a laptop and deleted company documents when she left Stardock two years earlier.
Both lawsuits were dismissed with prejudice, which means they cannot be opened again.
This dismal was part of a settlement Miseta and Wardell agreed. A condition of that settlement was that Miseta write a letter of apology, as reported by Kotaku.
Seapking to the games blog, Wardell said he was glad to put the legal mess behind him and that he had agreed to settle with Miseta for the sake of “vindication”.
“Essentially, we agreed to dismiss each other's cases – to drop our cases – In exchange for her apologizing to us,” he said. “Once we've received that, we feel vindicated.”
Wardell said no money was exchanged in the settlement, thought he did not go into specifics about the allegations. “I think her letter kinda speaks for itself on that,” he added.
In her case, Miseta alleged that Wardell had sent inappropriate emails to her, including a link to a sexually explicit online “purity test” that Wardell now claims was “spam”. It also purported that Miseta “was subjected to repeated and near-daily comments, innuendos, advances, and other offensive conduct of a sexual nature” by Wardell.
Meanwhile, Wardell’s case alleged that when Miseta left, she stole a laptop and destroyed “various data and other intellectual property” owned by Stardock.
Last year, Miseta’s lawyers maintained that Wardell’s suit was filed in reprisal for her allegations of sexual harassment, but Wardell denies this.
In an email, Wardell said: “[We] were willing to go to trial. However, we believe her apology for having filed a lawsuit against us and for deleting our marketing assets was sufficient to justify letting this matter go. Hopefully, when people read something ugly about someone in the Internet they'll be a bit more likely to reserve judgment. This was a difficult time for everyone involved. We hold no animus towards her and do not want to see her put into a bad light.”