Probe follows anti-Semitic slurs behind $1.25M settlement

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WALL TOWNSHIP — The township is conducting an internal investigation into incidents that provoked a harassment lawsuit from Brandon Jacobs, a Jewish ex-employee who said he was the target of anti-Semitic slurs by co-workers, including “Jewbacca” and “golem.”

The investigation was confirmed Wednesday by Deputy Mayor Kevin Orender, who said, “I’m appalled that this ever happened. Hopefully it will never happen again.”

Mayor Timothy Farrell, who said he did not know Mr. Jacobs personally, said, “I can’t image how bad this guy must have felt. It will never happen again, that I can assure you.” 

On May 23, the township committee approved a $1.25 million settlement with Mr. Jacobs, a former public works department employee. The township will pay $650,000 and its insurance carrier will pay the remaining $625,000.

The township has hired a forensic investigation law firm, Mayor Farrell said, to “review complaints, interview people involved and make recommendations on how they should be disciplined.”

In addition, the mayor said, the township brought in a law firm that in recent months gave sensitivity training to all employees and officials, including himself. The sessions were about three hours long, he said. “We’re not going to tolerate it [harassment],” he said.

For more on this story, read The Coast Star—on newsstands Thursday or online in our e-Edition.