LOS ANGELES (CNS) – A former model on “The Price Is Right” and the show’s producers have settled her lawsuit, in which she alleged she was sexually harassed when a male producer reprimanded her while she was partially nude in a dressing room.
Lanisha Cole, who maintained the run-in was so embarrassing that she later resigned, filed her lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court in September 2011. She named as defendants two of the show’s producers, Michael G. Richards and Adam Sandler — not the actor — and the production company, FremantleMedia North America.
Cole’s attorney, Solomon Gresen, filed a notice of settlement Friday with Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Debre Katz Weintraub, but no terms of the resolution were divulged.
Cole had alleged wrongful constructive termination, wrongful harassment, failure to prevent/ harassment and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress.
Weintraub dismissed Richards as a defendant on April 4.
Cole, a 31-year-old Pasadena native, started working on the show in 2003 and alleged her mistreatment began in December 2009, when Richards allegedly ceased talking to her and gave favorable treatment to another model.
She said Sandler walked into her dressing room in September 2010 without knocking and reprimanded her in front of her peers as she stood wearing only a thong bikini underwear bottom.
According to Cole’s deposition, the dressing room incident stemmed from her inability to respond to a routine on-stage comment made to her by host Drew Carey because she did not have a microphone.
Cole said that after she went to the models’ dressing room to change during a subsequent commercial break, Sandler suddenly came through the curtains and asked why she did not have her microphone so she could answer Carey.
Cole said she told Sandler that she did not have time to put on the device because she needed more time to get dressed and that the director was “screaming” at the stage manager to get the model out there.
Asked by defense attorney Kate Gold what she wearing when Sandler walked in, Cole replied, “Just my underwear, my thong.”
She said she was too surprised by what was happening to try and hide behind a couch in the room.
“When you’re in a moment like that … part of you is in shock and another part of you is … like you just can’t believe what was going on,” Cole said. “But I know for a fact that I couldn’t believe that I was standing there naked and he was still talking to me without even trying to cover his eyes or at least apologize or something. He said nothing about the fact that I was standing in front of him nude.”
Cole said she quit the show three months later out of frustration with the production company’s refusal to properly investigate her complaints.
Cole is a former colleague of one-time “TPIR” model Brandi Cochran, a Stevenson Ranch resident who won more than $8.5 million in compensatory and punitive damages against the show’s producers last November in a pregnancy discrimination case. The award was overturned in March by the trial judge, who said he gave the jury a wrong instruction.
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