Off to Stockton today for mediation in a case where I really hate the other guy, which is rare for me. This usually isn’t personal.
The case involves one of my longest term clients; a really great company owned by an awesome family who I am proud to represent.
The plaintiff is a supervisor who was fired in 2015. Two unrelated witnesses reported 2 employees smoking weed in a break area with this supervisor present. A detailed investigation was done, and all 3 were fired.
When he was placed on leave pending the investigation, he claimed that he had been harassed by a female custodian under his supervision, and tha HR had been ignoring his complaints. An independent PI was brought in to investigate, and found no harassment. The supervisor was fired for allowing drug use on the premises.
I can’t see any jury believing that (1) this male supervisor was harrassed by his female subordinate, a custodian who empties trash cans and cleans restrooms (wrong power dynamic); (2) that my client would fire him for complaining of harassment by her. He was a highly trained supervisor - a lot of investment. She is an unskilled worker at the bottom of the hierarchy. Fun facts:
*At his deposition, he said that he would never allow a safety hazard lime letting people get high at work. He then admitted that he got fired from his very next job because he was spotted smoking weed in his car driving home from a job site.
*He described the woman as constantly flirtatious, but gave little specifics. He talked about her “vibe,” which was kind of creepu.
* He sued the custodian personally (my client is paying for her lawyer), which is a dick move.
Our case is strong. We want to settle to avoid cost, but I want this lawyer to lose money.