Former Quapaw leader admits reason for resigning gaming post

J.R. Mathews, the former vice chairman of the Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma, admitted he stepped down from his leadership posts in response to a sexual harassment claim involving a gaming employee.

In May, Mathews resigned from his post on the board that oversees the Downstream Casino Resort, as vice chairman of the tribe and as treasurer of the National Indian Gaming Association. At the time, there were allegations that he personally profited from his tribe's casino.

But he now admits he sent a sexually explicit e-mail to a casino employee. "I'm a writer, and it was an erotic writing I admit that and I made a mistake, that's why I resigned, I should never have sent it," Mathews told KTUL-TV.

The woman has been telling her story because she believes no one has been held accountable for Mathews' actions. So far, she has been rebuffed by the Oklahoma Human Right's Commission and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The woman also filed a complaint with the tribe's grievance committee but hasn't heard back. She quit her job in July.

Get the Story:
Sexually Explicit Letter Sent to Subordinate (KTUL 11/11)

Relevant Documents:
Grievance Committee Report (March 20, 2010)

Earlier Stories:
Quapaw leader steps down from board overseeing casino (4/30)
Quapaw Tribe official recants report on gaming allegations (4/8)
Opinion: Quapaw chairman manipulates tribal regulations (4/7)
Quapaw chairman won't call meeting over gaming report (4/2)
BIA not involved in gaming dispute within Quapaw Tribe (3/31)
BIA asks Quapaw leaders to answer to casino allegations (3/30)
Quapaw chairman dismisses allegations in gaming report (3/29)
Quapaw leaders accused of wrongly profiting from casino (3/23)