Christman, Kelley & Clarke Wins Sexual Harassment Trial Against a 7-Eleven franchisee
Sexual Harassment Trial Victory
Most civil cases are resolved by some form of settlement. Some cases have to be tried. Christman, Kelley & Clarke shareholder Matthew Clarke headed the trial team along with associate Matthew Mong against 7-Eleven franchisees in a eight day trial in Santa Maria, California.
Sexual Harassment Trial Allegations
The complaint (sexual harassment complaint available here) alleged legal claims for hostile environment, quid pro quo sexual harassment, retaliation and other claims. The facts of the case were disgusting. The complaint alleged, among other things, “NAGRA began this course of harassment at work when he asked Plaintiff to provide him with naked photographs of her vagina. NAGRA asked that Plaintiff provide him with a photograph of her vagina without any hair. Specifically, NAGRA said, he wanted a naked picture of Plaintiff’s vagina, ‘Like before you go out on a date.’ When he asked Plaintiff for photographs of her naked, Plaintiff felt shocked and embarrassed. Plaintiff told him, ‘you can’t have that, don’t ask me for that!’ NAGRA would not give up.”
Plaintiff further alleged in her complaint that: “NAGRA also told Plaintiff he wanted a picture of “[her] stuff” and a picture of “[her vagina] with no bush” and that Plaintiff’s “job would end” if Plaintiff did not comply. NAGRA’s ongoing physical and verbal behavior toward Plaintiff made Plaintiff feel physically sick. Plaintiff was under constant stress; Plaintiff suffered from anxiety; Plaintiff suffered from depression.”
Defendants Lose the Sexual Harassment Trial
Christman, Kelley & Clarke prevailed in the trial obtaining money damages for the client. More importantly, the client’s rights were vindicate and a strong message sent to the 7-Eleven franchisee that sexual harassment in the workplace will not be tolerated. The firm’s motion for attorney fees was granted and judgment entered against the franchisees.
7-Eleven, the franchisor, settled before the trial started.