Sterling Accused of Racism, Sexual Harassment in New Lawsuit - NBC Southern California

Sterling Accused of Racism, Sexual Harassment in New Lawsuit

Woman claims she was a former girlfriend of Sterling's who became an assistant and was harassed



    A woman who says she was in a romantic relationship with Donald Sterling for several years and later worked as his personal assistant has sued the embattled Clippers owner for discrimination and retaliation.

    Maiko Maya King alleges her claim stems from “a steady stream of racially and sexually offensive comments” during the time she was employed by Sterling.

    According to the lawsuit, King first met Sterling in 2005. She alleges he encouraged her to leave her husband and pursue a romantic relationship. She says she worked for his foundation while they were involved.

    King, who is represented by high-profile attorney Gloria Allred, claims her personal relationship with Sterling ended in 2011, partly because they repeatedly argued about his “racist views.”

    The lawsuit alleges that Sterling specifically taunted her about having previously been married to a black man, with whom she had children, asking her "Why would you bring black people into the world?"

    But in December 2013, the two reconnected and, according to King, Sterling agreed to pay her $10,000 a month to be his personal assistant - taking him to doctor’s appointments, accompanying him to meetings, going on walks with him and encouraging him to stop drinking - with the additional promise of $100,000 at year’s end, a house and a car.

    Maxwell Blecher, an attorney for Sterling, told NBC4 he does not know anything about King's lawsuit.

    King claims she learned V.Stiviano - the woman at the center of the Sterling controversy - was then Sterling's girlfriend, and understood that there would be no romantic relationship between King and Sterling because of that.

    Instead, King alleges Sterling frequently demanded sexual acts from her, despite a relationship with Stiviano, and made derogatory negative racial comments in front of her.

    She says she protested, and Sterling responded by firing her in early May. She claims in the lawsuit that the environment around Sterling's house - where he was frequently seen walking around nude - caused her to suffer “extreme and severe mental anguish and emotional distress.”

    Sterling was fined $2.5 million and banned for life by the NBA after an audio tape of him making rascist comments during an argument with companion Stiviano surfaced.

    King is seeking a jury trial and unspecified damages. 

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