IN RE: the Claim of Kevin L. WILLIAMS

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Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department, New York.

IN RE: the Claim of Kevin L. WILLIAMS, Appellant. Commissioner of Labor, Respondent.

Decided: September 21, 2006

Before:  CREW III, J.P., PETERS, CARPINELLO, MUGGLIN and ROSE, JJ. Kevin L. Williams, Bellport, appellant pro se. Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General, New York City (Gary Leibowitz of counsel), for respondent.

Appeal from a decision of the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board, filed December 6, 2005, which ruled that claimant was disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance benefits because his employment was terminated due to misconduct.

 Claimant, a mail handler, was accused of inappropriately grabbing a female coworker from behind and then trying to do the same to another female coworker.   In addition to being discharged from his employment, claimant also was arrested and charged with sexual abuse and forcible touching.   The Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board ruled that claimant was disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance benefits because he lost his employment due to misconduct.   We affirm.   It is well settled that offensive behavior in the workplace which is detrimental to the employer's best interest constitutes disqualifying misconduct (see Matter of Ferro [Commissioner of Labor], 283 A.D.2d 828, 829, 725 N.Y.S.2d 721 [2001];  Matter of Krupa [Sweeney], 236 A.D.2d 772, 654 N.Y.S.2d 837).   Although claimant denied engaging in any inappropriate conduct, this created a credibility issue for the Board to resolve (see Matter of Manno [Commissioner of Labor], 8 A.D.3d 869, 779 N.Y.S.2d 140 [2004] ).   Notwithstanding the fact that the criminal charges against claimant were dismissed, there is substantial evidence in the record supporting the Board's decision.

ORDERED that the decision is affirmed, without costs.

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