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Illinois jury awards $95M for sexual harassment

(via Flickr/steakpinball)

A federal jury has awarded a woman $95 million in a sexual harassment lawsuit against an Illinois rent-to-own business in suburban St. Louis.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on its website Thursday that the award against Aaron's Inc. includes $15 million in compensatory damages and $80 million in punitive damages.

The lawsuit by the 20-year-old employee claimed that she was harassed for almost a year by a supervisor at a Fairview Heights store, culminating in an October 2006 sexual assault.

Aaron's Inc. said in a written statement that the jury's decision is an example of a "classic runaway jury" and it will appeal. The company said it believes $50 million of the judgment exceeds caps set by law.