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Lawsuits filed against Lake Erie island town, chief accused of ignoring sexual assault claims

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PUT-IN-BAY, Ohio — Two police officers have filed lawsuits against the Lake Erie island resort town of Put-in-Bay and its police chief accused of blocking an investigation into the officers' sexual assault claims.

The two lawsuits were filed Friday against Put-in-Bay, Chief Robert Lampela and Ottawa County. The suits allege the two officers reported in 2003 they were sexually assaulted by a fellow officer, but Lampela refused to investigate the allegations. Court documents say the officers were subjected to repeated harassment and retaliation while employed by the department.

Lampela was charged in February with dereliction of duty, falsification and other misdemeanors.

Put-in-Bay's legal counsel and Lapela's attorney weren't immediately available for comment. Ottawa County Prosecutor Mark Mulligan said he'd be looking over the lawsuit, but didn't believe the county should be held responsible.

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