The Latest: Officers reach agreement over retaliation fear

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Latest on Philadelphia Police Commissioner (all times local):

1:55 p.m.

Two female police officers whose sexual harassment lawsuit led to the resignation of Philadelphia’s police commissioner have reached a temporary agreement with the city over their fears of retaliation.

A lawsuit filed this month says their complaints of being physically and verbally harassed by colleagues were ignored. One accuses outgoing Commissioner Richard Ross of doing nothing because of what she calls a two-year affair with him that she broke off in 2011.

Ross said Wednesday he has never retaliated against anyone. He says he stepped down Tuesday for the good of the city he loves.

The women say they’ve been given undesirable jobs and suffered stress-related medical problems.

A court document cancelling Wednesday’s hearing says the two sides have reached an agreement on their request for job protections. Their lawyer did not return a call seeking comment.

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11:45 a.m.

Former Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross says his abrupt resignation was completely voluntary and he has never “sought retribution” on anyone.

Speaking outside police headquarters Wednesday, Ross says his love for the city compelled him to make a decision that was bigger than him.

Ross resigned Tuesday, a day after two female officers say their complaints of being physically and verbally harassed by supervisors and colleagues were ignored by department brass.

One woman said Ross ignored her reports of sexual harassment because she broke off an affair with Ross.

Ross says he’s “never sought retribution on a person, personally or professionally.”

The suit claims members of the police department engaged in sexual harassment and racial and gender discrimination against them.

The women will ask a federal judge Wednesday to protect them from retaliation on the job

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