Former New York Correctional Officer Can Bring Disability Discrimination Claim to Trial

By Reba Weiss and Brennen Johnson

Disability-Discrimination-120x120In Sherman v. County of Suffolk, a U.S. District Court determined that a former correctional officer presented legitimate allegations that the County of Suffolk, New York, discriminated against him based on his disability. In his lawsuit, the former officer alleged that the County discriminated against him based on a leg injury he sustained during training as a recruit. The County then filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that there was no evidence to prove that discrimination was the reason that the former officer lost his job. Although the County convinced the Court that no medical evidence could support an inference that the Officer actually suffered from a disability, the Court concluded that reliable evidence suggested that the County still perceived him as disabled and fired him because of that perception.

[Read more…]

Idaho Department of Corrections Found Not Liable for Sexual Assault Occurring Outside the Workplace

Erica Shelley Nelson and Brennen Johnson

factsIn Fuller v. Idaho Department of Corrections, a U.S. District Court granted summary judgment in favor of the Idaho Department of Corrections (IDOC), finding that it did not violate the rights of a former corrections officer. The female officer sued the IDOC, alleging sexual harassment and discrimination. Although the officer was assaulted and raped by a coworker, the IDOC was not liable when the assaults arose from the employees’ relationship outside the workplace and, upon learning of the incidents, the IDOC immediately began investigating the coworker, barred him from the premises, and ultimately recommended his termination.

[Read more…]

Police Officer Makes Plausible Claim That City Retaliated After He Won A Reverse Discrimination Case

By Erica Shelley Nelson and Brennen Johnson

corrupt mayorIn Smith v. City of Inkster, a U.S. District Court determined that a police officer stated a plausible claim against the City of Inkster, Michigan, and its Mayor and allowed the lawsuit to proceed to trial. In his lawsuit, the Officer claimed that the City retaliated against him by denying his application for disability benefits after he filed a lawsuit. After the City moved for a judgment against the Officer’s lawsuit before trial, the Court determined that the Officer had presented direct evidence supporting his claims and that he deserved to present his case at trial.

[Read more…]

Inexplicable Flip-Flop: Park Ranger Gender Discrimination and Retaliation Charges Proper for Trial when Female Supervisor Decided to Fire Her Two Weeks after Her Sexual Harassment Complaint against Male Supervisor

By Mitchell Riese and Mitchel Wilson

flipIn Vicino v. Maryland Department of Natural Resources, the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland denied the defendant employer’s motion for summary judgment because the plaintiff park ranger had sufficiently alleged sexual discrimination. The Court determined that material facts for a jury existed and that summary judgment was improper.

[Read more…]

Court Dismisses Female Police Officer’s Sex-Based Discrimination Lawsuit Against Florida Police Department For Failing To Provide A Suitable Female Changing Room

By Erica Shelley Nelson and Brennen Johnson

Sexual-Harassment-DefenseIn Melendez v. Town of Bay Harbor Islands, a U.S. District Court dismissed a female police officer’s lawsuit for sex-based discrimination against the Police Department of Bay Harbor Islands, Florida. The Officer brought the lawsuit claiming that the Police Department engaged in sex-based discrimination by failing to provide suitable changing areas for female employees. In a summary judgment proceeding, the Court explained that the Officer failed to allege facts sufficient to show that any actions taken by the Police Department were motivated by sex-based discrimination. Although the Officer failed on her sex-based discrimination claim, the Court explained that the Police Department might still be liable for creating a hostile work environment towards women.

[Read more…]

Can’t Cock his Glock: Career Officer Cannot Show Age Discrimination Where He Failed to Qualify with his Baton and Firearm

By Mitchell Riese and Mitchel Wilson

gun and batonIn Otto v. City of Newport, a former police officer alleged his employer discharged him because of his age, but the Eastern District of Kentucky granted the defendant employer’s motion for summary judgment because there “is no evidence that the Plaintiff was qualified for the position, and there is no direct evidence of the Defendant’s discriminatory intent.”

[Read more…]

City Improperly Relied on Former Officer’s History of Mental Illness Rather than Her Current Mental Health Status to Reject Her Application

By Mitchell Riese and Mitchel Wilson

possible threatIn Nelson v. City of New York, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York denied the City’s motion for summary judgment and permitted the plaintiff’s disability discrimination claim to go to trial. The Court reasoned that there was no clear evidence that the former officer could not perform the essential functions of the job and that the issue was proper for trial.

[Read more…]

Vet with PTSD May Bring Disability Discrimination Claim Under the Rehab Act for Not Being Hired by Border Patrol

By Mitchell Riese and Mitchel Wilson

PTSDIn Maish v. Napalitano, U. S. District Court for the Western District of Washington denied the Border Patrol’s motion for summary judgment and permitted a Border Patrol applicant’s disability discrimination claims to go to trial. The Court concluded the applicant, Maish, had a viable claim under the federal Rehabilitation Act for disability discrimination when the Border Patrol failed to hire Maish after learning of his mental illness.

[Read more…]

Dispatcher with Plausible Disability Who Offers Little to No Evidence to Establish She is Disabled is Denied Trial for ADA Claim

By Mitchell Riese and Mitchel Wilson

bonesIn Felkins v. City of Lakewood, the U.S District Court of Colorado addressed cross motions for summary judgment and granted defendant’s motion, thereby dismissing plaintiff’s case.  The Court ruled that she did not establish that she was disabled.

[Read more…]

Lieutenant Suffering from On-the-Job Knee Injury May Bring Claim to Trial where it is Unclear if Patrolling is an Essential Function of his Position

By Mitchell Riese and Mitchel Wilson

DisabilityDiscrim2wheelchairIn DeStefano v. City of Philadelphia, the Court dismissed cross motions for summary judgment, concluding that Orlando DeStefano’s disability discrimination claims under the federal Rehabilitation Act may go to trial for a knee injury when the issue is whether patrolling is part of a lieutenant’s essential functions.

[Read more…]