Reprinted with Permission
A Houston firefighter who alleged she was discriminated against at her firehouse was accused Tuesday of shoplifting at a Wal-Mart in the Spring area.
Jane Draycott, 41, is charged with theft, a misdemeanor, according to the Harris County judicial records.
She is free on $500 bond.
Draycott, of Magnolia, could not be reached for comment. Acting Houston Fire Department Chief Rick Flanagan said the department is awaiting the results of the investigation to determine how to address Draycott’s status and that she will remain on duty until then.
Draycott left work early on Monday because of an unspecified injury, Fanagan said. She was arrested about 9:30 p.m. at a Wal-Mart Super Center at 21150 Kuykendahl near FM 2920, said Assistant Deputy Chief Mark Herman of the Harris County Constable’s Office Precinct 4.
Draycott attempted to take a DVD player and other items, including a bag of ice, from the store without paying for them, Herman said. He said the merchandise was valued at about $200.
Store security staff stopped her and called authorities.
Draycott was one of two female firefighters who reported finding racist and sexist graffiti on their dormitory walls inside Fire Station 54 in July 2009.
She later filed a law suit against the city of Houston.
The lawsuit, filed in Harris County state district court, lists allegations of harassment against Draycott leading up to the graffiti incident, including at least one instance of unwanted sexual advances that went unpunished.
Draycott’s employment attorney, Joe Ahmad, had the lawsuit dismissed a few weeks ago because he felt he had “filed it prematurely” and should have waited until the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission had completed its investigation.
That investigation is pending.
Chronicle reporter Terri Langford contributed to this article.