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Carrie L. Nolet is suing New Hampshire State Police claiming she was twice passed over for promotion from lieutenant to captain because she is a woman and a lesbian.
During her 20 years in State Police, Nolet said she was subjected to sexual harassment in a “good-old-boy” culture that so severely intimidated her and other women that she still suffers from anxiety and depression two years after retiring in 2013.
During her entire career, “the New Hampshire State Police culture has been rife with pervasive incidents of gender bias and sexual harassment too numerous (for her) to recall every instance or every exact date,” Nolet wrote in the lawsuit filed in May in U.S. District Court in Concord.
Nolet, who lives in Chocorua, said she was also terrified that her colleagues would find out she is gay.
“There was a lot of derogatory talk about gay troopers,” Nolet said during interviews. “It’s not seen as something people can openly discuss. It was very stressful.”
Assistant Attorney General Rebecca Woodard filed the state’s response to the suit on Oct. 9 denying Nolet’s allegations. Beyond the court filing, Woodard said the state would have no comment.
Nolet described New Hampshire State Police as a male-dominated organization in which men commonly used language that belittled women, minorities and homosexuals.
“Male troopers called each other “P—-” to imply that they were not being tough enough and/or acting like women,” wrote Nolet, who is representing herself in the lawsuit.
About InDepthNH: Nancy West founded the nonprofit New Hampshire Center for Public Interest Journalism in April. West is the executive editor of the center’s investigative news website InDepthNH.org. West has won many awards for investigative reporting during her 30 years at the New Hampshire Union Leader. She has taught investigative journalism at the New England Center for Investigative Reporting’s summer program for pre-college students at Boston University. West is passionate about government transparency. The New Hampshire Center for Public Interest Journalism is a member of the Institute for Nonprofit News, formerly called Investigative News Network, which is also InDepthNH.org’s fiscal sponsor. Cllick here to read about INN to learn more about the mission of nonprofit news.
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