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BY KEITH EPPS
A supervisor in Fredericksburg's Public Works Department has been accused of improperly touching another employee.
Zolly Hawthorne, 59, of Spotsylvania County is charged with sexual battery, city police spokeswoman Natatia Bledsoe said.
The charge is a Class 1 misdemeanor that carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail.
Bledsoe said the incident occurred about 3:45 p.m. Friday, Dec. 14, inside the city maintenance building at 1000 Tyler St.
The woman reported the incident to police on Dec. 27, and Hawthorne was arrested the next day. Hawthorne, who has no criminal record, was released on a personal recognizance bond.
City Manager Bev Cameron said the city staff began an investigation on Dec. 17 and are terminating Hawthorne.
Cameron said Hawthorne was initially on paid leave, but is not now being paid.
Cameron said Hawthorne, who is also a minister and an assistant to the pastor at Mount Olive Baptist Church in Stafford County, has worked for the city since 2000.
He most recently supervised the department's street sanitation division, Cameron said, and supervised the woman who filed the allegation.
Bledsoe said anyone with information about this case or others is asked to call Detective Carlos Reyes at 540/654-5919.
Keith Epps: 540/374-5404