A 33-year-old woman has filed a lawsuit against a popular Margate bar, alleging that the owners condoned and even participated in repeated acts of sexual harassment after she took a job as a waitress there in February, 2017. The plaintiff took the job at Tipsy Taco and Tequila Bar on Ventnor to supplement her income as a nurse, and alleges that the sexual harassment began almost immediately.

Ericka Puglisi, from the Atlantic City area, alleges in her complaint that the bar’s engaged in numerous acts that constituted sexual harassment, including:

  • Repeatedly fondling her thighs, shoulders and other body parts
  • Calling her suggestive names, such as “sexy,” “babe,” and “sweetie”
  • Putting his crotch in her face when she was bent down to get something from her purse
  • Offering her money in exchange for sexual favors, including $150 for oral sex

She further alleges that the bar owners required her (and all other female employees) to allow customers to “purchase” body shots, ranging in price from $20 to $100, where they permitted a customer to lick salt of a female employee’s body, do a shot of tequila, and then suck a lime wedge out of the employee’s mouth. Puglisi says she initially refused to perform body shots, but gave in when the owner relentlessly insisted.

Puglisi also alleges that other male employees were encouraged and allowed to grope, grab or otherwise touch female employees, and that a number of them regularly touched her breasts and buttocks, and one male employee forced her hand on his crotch.

According to the lawsuit, when Puglisi’s mother came to the bar to confront the owner, he responded by threatening to burn down Puglisi’s house.


To learn how we can help you if you have been the victim of sexual harassment, contact us online or call us at 732-702-0333 (toll free at ). There is no charge for your first meeting. We have offices in Freehold, Toms River and Point Pleasant.