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Businessman sued for allegedly giving employee herpes

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) -- A former employee of a prominent Sioux Falls business has filed a lawsuit in federal court alleging the company's owner failed to disclose that he had a sexually transmitted disease prior to their intimate relationship.

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - A former employee of a prominent Sioux Falls business has filed a lawsuit in federal court alleging the company's owner failed to disclose that he had a sexually transmitted disease prior to their intimate relationship.

The lawsuit alleges that Henry "Chip" Carlson, the owner of the Henry Carlson Co., failed to disclose to Becky Campbell that Carlson had genital herpes before the two started a relationship in which they were eventually engaged, The Argus Leader reported.

Carlson's lawyer, Kent Cutler, issued a statement denying the allegations against his client.

"Becky Campbell's complaint is replete with inaccurate and false allegations," the statement said. "Ms. Campbell was a participant in a consensual relationship in which there was full disclosure. Rather than ending the relationship in a dignified manner, Ms. Campbell has elected to disparage Mr. Carlson and sue him for millions of dollars to which she is not entitled."

Carlson's nearly 100-year-old company is named in the lawsuit as a defendant, along with two affiliated companies, Kyburz-Carlson Construction Co. and Asphalt Surfacing Co. of Aberdeen. The company has built several projects in Sioux Falls, including government buildings and schools, and serving as the at-risk construction manager for a proposed $22 million city administration building.

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The suit also alleges that the companies breached Campbell's employment contract when she was forced out of her job as director of human resources and risk management after learning that she tested positive.

The lawsuit does not name a dollar figure, although it seeks compensatory, general, special and punitive damages.

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