- The Washington Times - Monday, June 6, 2005

An Alexandria City Public Schools official has been accused of sexually harassing employees at his former job near Richmond and of verbally and physically intimidating others.

Two women from Prince George County Public Schools, 30 minutes south of Richmond, have filed suit against David Rose, the director of transportation for Alexandria City Public Schools.

Mr. Rose was hired by Superintendent Rebecca L. Perry in April 2004 after serving in the same job in Prince George, a school district of about 6,500 students. Alexandria has about 11,000 students.

Ruchanok C. Cramer, a 49-year-old bus driver, said Mr. Rose touched and rubbed her legs on an empty bus on Sept. 6, 2002, and told her she had “nice legs.” When she yelled at him and told him to get off the bus, “he began a campaign of retaliation” that lasted until he left for Alexandria.

Mrs. Cramer, a mother of three, filed suit in Prince George County Circuit Court in February.

“After he wanted to play around with me, I told him I didn’t want him to touch me, and he didn’t like it, and after that he retaliated against me for that many, many times,” Mrs. Cramer said.

She said Mr. Rose showed favoritism toward other school bus drivers who “liked to be touched,” rewarding them with better routes, field trips and other perks.

She is seeking $100,000 in damages.

Another bus driver, Wanda Coleman, has filed a civil suit seeking $15,000 for similar harassment.

Alexandria schools spokeswoman Cinnamon Burnum was not aware of the suits, and did not return phone calls seeking comment. But Mrs. Perry told WJLA-7 News that the schools are looking into the charges.

Mrs. Cramer said Mr. Rose cursed at her in front of students, threatened to suspend and fire her and bumped into her on purpose. She said she sought psychiatric counseling as a result.

Mrs. Cramer was suspended from her job for one day in April 2003. She said she was suspended for forgetting about an early release, and that she was able to pick up the second run of students that day.

She also said that in seven years of driving a bus, she never missed a day until the confrontation with her boss. Then, she said, she missed 52 days from March 2004 to September 2004.

“When you have people filled with anxiety and angst because of the way they’re being treated, you don’t want them driving around a bus load of kids when they’ve been made to be so upset,” said Mrs. Cramer’s attorney, Neil Kuchinsky.

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