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Employee Claims Sexual Harassment at Naval Academy Bookstore

October 1, 1992

BALTIMORE (AP) _ A teen-age cashier has accused the officer in charge of the U.S. Naval Academy bookstore of sexual harassment, complaining he told her to read a magazine article about Madonna and ″highlight all the dirty parts.″

The officer said Wednesday he had wanted a second opinion on the issue of Vanity Fair, which he had pulled from shelves after another female employee said it was offensive.

Nicole Stuller, 17, said that she was shocked by the seminude photos of Madonna and that being ordered to read the article amounted to harassment.

″He told me to go into the lounge and go through the magazine and ’highlight all the dirty parts,‴ Ms. Stuller said in her complaint. ″I felt very uncomfortable and embarrassed looking at these things and especially highlighting all the trashy parts.″

The graphic article deals with ″Sex,″ Madonna’s new book of erotic photos.

Lt. Cmdr. Steve Taylor said he didn’t want to be accused of censorship for pulling the magazine, so he had asked Ms. Stuller for a second opinion. ″In retrospect, I think I’ve made an error. I should have looked at it myself,″ he said.

The complaint, filed with the store’s civilian manager, comes a month after Navy personnel were required to attend seminars on sexual harassment. The seminars were prompted by the Tailhook scandal, in which drunken aviators pushed women through a gauntlet in a Las Vegas hotel hallway and groped them.

Cmdr. Mike John, a spokesman for the academy, said Taylor showed poor judgment in the Sept. 16 incident. But he said the incident did not amount to harassment, and no discipline is planned.

″It’s his role to take a look and see what’s on the shelves at The Midshipmen Store and make sure the right type of material is there. He was trying to do that,″ John said.

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