Six women who sued Collin County officials over alleged misconduct have dropped their claims in exchange for a $1.75 million settlement agreement offered by the county’s insurance company.
The lawsuit, filed last October, accused Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis and First Assistant DA Bill Wirskye of sexual harassment and misconduct.
Willis called it a “lawsuit full of lies.”
The six plaintiffs—three current and three former employees of the county’s Criminal District Attorney’s office—also claimed Collin County Commissioners Court members were aware of the misconduct and refused to take remedial action.
Monday afternoon, commissioners unanimously agreed to settle an amended lawsuit.
In the amended suit, the plaintiffs retracted all their sexual harassment and other allegations and simply allege they suffered retaliation.
County Judge Chris Hill said that despite the commissioners court’s objections, the county’s insurance company was concerned about the potential costs of litigation and any potential judgment and offered the plaintiffs a cash settlement.
The three plaintiffs still employed by the county also resigned as part of the settlement agreement.
The defendants deny all the allegations and will not pay any of the settlement, nor will any taxpayer dollars be used to pay the plaintiffs.
“The Commissioners and I take allegations such as these very seriously, and they deserve nothing less than a full, thorough, and impartial investigation,” Hill said Tuesday.
“Immediately after learning of the allegations, the Commissioners Court engaged an independent legal firm to investigate the claims,” he said. ”The investigator interviewed over 30 current or former employees in the District Attorney’s office and discovered numerous inconsistencies, material inaccuracies, and false statements in the allegations. Additionally, multiple employees directly disputed many of the allegations contained in the lawsuit.”
Hill added, “The Commissioners Court responded with appropriate care and vigilance, and I am now convinced that these allegations were without merit.”