Division Chief Wins $1.4 Million In Age Discrimination Claim

George Corley was a division chief for the San Bernardino County Fire Protection District. Corley received numerous awards for his service, and a former District fire chief testified that Corley was “doing a very good job dealing with the communities” that he served. Corley’s employee file contained no evidence of discipline. In his 2010 performance evaluation, Corley received an “exceeds standards” overall rating. In May 2011, the County of…

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Refusing Request To Use Employer’s Car Amounts To Illegal Discrimination

Frank Blair and Gabe Molina are employees of the New Mexico Department of Corrections, and are officials of AFSCME Local 3422, the bargaining unit for New Mexico’s corrections officers. In 2009, the Department denied a request from Blair and Molina to use a state vehicle to travel to and from a policy review meeting with Department management. Blair and Molina were attending the meeting in their capacity as “employee…

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Brady Designation May Require Reasonable Accommodation

  Litigation between police officer Adam Hubacz and the Village of Waterbury, Vermont has been going on since 2012. While employed as a police officer by the Village, Hubacz applied for a law enforcement position in another town. He participated in a pre-polygraph examination interview, which was a required condition of the application process. During the interview, Hubacz admitted to several acts, including cheating on a police exam, insurance…

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Without Court Order, Wiretap Evidence Inadmissible In Civil Service Hearing

The California Court of Appeals has ruled that without a court order, wiretap evidence is inadmissible in a civil service disciplinary hearing. The case began in 2009, when the high intensity drug trafficking area task force came to believe that Los Angeles Sheriff ’s Department Detective Carlos Arellano was associating with known narcotics felons, using his law enforcement status to obtain inside information from the Department to provide to…

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Internal Grievances Not Protected By The First Amendment

Booth James had worked for the Montgomery, Alabama Regional Airport Authority for approximately 15 years as a Third Shift Police Supervisor when he observed misconduct concerning the evidence impound of the Transportation Security Administration. After discussing these concerns with his supervisors and others, James sent a grievance letter to the Airport’s Board of Directors, detailing issues about public safety and falsified misconduct within the Airport Police Department. When the…

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‘Site Visits’ To Fire Stations Violate Duty To Bargain

Firefighters in Santa Rosa, California are represented by Local 1401 of the International Association of Firefighters. Over the years, the Fire Department considered the creation of a second battalion chief position. Though industry standards warranted the creation of the position, funding was always an insurmountable hurdle. There was no discussion of what became known as “the BC2 plan” during negotiations for the 2013-2015 Memorandum of Understanding between Local 1401…

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Officer Wins Bill Of Rights Battle, Loses The War

California’s Peace Officers Bill of Rights provides that “no punitive action shall be undertaken for any act, omission, or other allegation of misconduct if the investigation of the allegation is not completed within one year of the public agency’s discovery by a person authorized to initiate an investigation of the allegation of an act, omission, or other misconduct.” A separate section of the Bill of Rights allows for the…

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Civil Service Can Consider Officer’s Behavior During Appeal Hearing

John Ingersoll was a police officer for Mattawa, Washington. In May 2012, his wife and children left their house and were transported to a domestic violence safe house. The City placed Ingersoll on administrative leave. After a three-month investigation, the City sent Ingersoll a pre-disciplinary letter accusing him of domestic violence as well as harassment and intimidation of various Mattawa citizens and several other allegations. At the ensuing hearing,…

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Arbitration Decision Binding In Later Discrimination Lawsuit

From December 10, 2001 to September 25, 2012, Joshua Billings worked for the Public Safety Department of the Town of Steilacoom, Washington. On May 8, 2012, the City demoted Billings from the rank of sergeant to Public Safety Office (PSO). PSOs served dual roles as police officers and firefighters under the supervision of a Police Chief. Following several internal affairs investigations, the Chief concluded Billings violated numerous policies and…

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ADA Does Not Give Dispatcher Right To Bring Dog To Work

Stefanie Maubach is a dispatcher for the City of Fairfax, Virginia. Her job includes answering emergency calls, receiving and transmitting radio and telephone messages, and dispatching police and other emergency personnel when needed. Maubach worked the night shift with another dispatcher. In February 2016, Maubach asked her lieutenant if she could bring her dog to work. Maubach told her lieutenant that having her dog, Mr. B, at work would…

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