Law enforcement agencies are a male-dominated profession with a small number of women being sworn into duty. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics study conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice in 2010, only about 15% of sworn law enforcement officers are women at all levels. On February 10, 2014, Virginia Beach law enforcement officer, Nicole Kosmas, filed a lawsuit against the city of Virginia Beach and its police department for millions of dollars, according to the Huffington Post. Ms Kosmas is 39 years old and filed the complaint in the United States District Court of Norfolk. She claims that she was harassed and retaliated against since 2008.
Ms. Kosmas was a 10-year veteran of the Virginia Beach Police Department and was the first woman to make the SWAT team. However, according to Kosmas, this is when the discrimination began. The lawsuit names 13 law enforcement officers from the Virginia Beach Police Department that are involved in the discrimination suit.
Kosmas who is represented by Harris Butler III says the discrimination by the Virginia Beach Police Department is nothing new. There have been two previous cases against the same police department which one resulted in a verdict against the department, which Mr. Butler personally handled, and the second resulted in an agreement before trial took place.