Technically, they settled for $1.15M. But, that won’t stop me from playing some ‘Lil Wayne.
Many of you have good taste in employment law blogs, my ramblings and typos notwithstanding. That’s because you also read Jon Hyman’s Ohio Employer Law Blog. Jon’s blog is a pragmatic take on topical employment law issues.
Jon rarely pulls punches. It’s what makes his blog special. Indeed, in the past few years, he has picked out nominees for “Worst Employer” of the year. Most recently, Jon wrote here about an African-American man — let’s just call him ‘plaintiff’ — who worked for a company in the Pacific Northwest. That is until the plaintiff allegedly raised concerns about race discrimination to his boss.
What happened next was some hecka-retaliation (allegedly).
Check out what the plaintiff claimed happened to him.
The plaintiff’s boss apparently contacted a friend, a local police chief, and persuaded him to investigate false allegations that the plaintiff had stolen from the company. According to the plaintiff, the police investigated and found no evidence of theft. Still, they arrested the plaintiff, who spent about eight hours at the police station before he was released on his own recognizance. The police later told the plaintiff to return to the police station to gather some belongings. While he was there, officers informed the plaintiff that he had been fired from his job. And those criminal charges (allegedly filed after the plaintiff had sued his former employer)? They were later dismissed.
And according to this report from Crystal Bonvillian at Kiro7, the plaintiff has settled his lawsuits. Yes, that’s lawsuits plural, one against his former employer and one against the police department.
Time to break out the checkbooks.
The police department agreed to pay $600,000, which is apparently one of the largest wrongful arrest settlements in Oregon history. The plaintiff previously settled with his former boss for $415,000.
Ms. Bonvillian also reports that, since the settlement, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and three members of Congress have called for a federal investigation into the alleged wrongdoing of various police officials.
Yes, this may be some Mt. Rushmore of retaliation stuff right here, and I can see why Jon installed the former employer as a “Worst…” nominee.