Ex-commerce official drops lawsuit alleging harassment

Published 2:20 pm Saturday, June 4, 2016

ST. PAUL — A former top official at the Minnesota Department of Commerce who sued alleging sexual harassment and misconduct by another agency executive said he’ll set aside his claim because of financial limitations. 

Timothy Vande Hey recently filed a lawsuit in Ramsey County months after abruptly resigning his job leading the department’s insurance division. Vande Hey said he faced sexual advances from another commerce official whom he said also ordered her staff to destroy documents — a possible violation of state law.

Vande Hey said he doesn’t have the money to proceed with the lawsuit. His motion for dismissal allows him to possibly refile the case later.

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Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman has dismissed Vande Hey’s allegations against the top official as “simply false.”