A Dallas woman claims personal trainers at an LA Fitness club in Plano, TX, made sexually suggestive comments to her and made her do exercises that were sexual in nature.
The petition was filed Jan. 30 in a Dallas County court. According to a report by Dallas TV station CBS 11, Jamie Johnson claims one personal trainer told her that he made her do exercises so he could see her chest move while she did them. Johnson stopped going to the LA Fitness, but returned to work with another trainer, whom she claims made sexually suggestive comments and left a vulgar text message that her 5-year-old son happened to see on her phone.
Johnson told the TV station that she contacted LA Fitness to complain about the incidents, and the company offered her $400. She says she pays $200 per month and has a two-year contract.
Johnson hired attorney Chase Laws, who filed a lawsuit for deceptive trade practices and negligence. Laws says Johnson is suffering traumatic emotional distress and is unable to function in her daily activities, and that her husband has suffered, too.
Laws confirmed to Club Industry that he sent a demand letter to LA Fitness before filing the lawsuit, then hand-delivered a petition to the club in Plano, but he received no response. Laws says the petition is not a sexual harassment lawsuit.
"It does involve sexual harassment, but I'm not filing an EEOC claim because we're not dealing with an employer-employee relationship here," Laws tells Club Industry. "They perpetrated sexual harassment upon her, but it was done through a business employee and a customer."
An executive for Irvine, CA-based LA Fitness told Club Industry that the company does not comment on pending litigation.