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Jury Awards Cal. Man $18M for Harassment
http://www.lasvegassun.com/ ^ | October 27, 2006 | AP

Posted on 10/27/2006 11:28:29 PM PDT by teldon30

Jury Awards Cal. Man $18M for Harassment LOS ANGELES (AP) - A jury has ordered The Vons Companies Inc. to pay more than $18 million in damages to a former employee who claimed the supermarket chain fired him after he filed a report accusing a female supervisor of sexual harassment.

The Simi Valley jury awarded more than $16 million in punitive damages to James Stevens on Friday, two days after ordering Vons to pay the one-time inventory clerk $1.7 million for economic loss and emotional distress, said attorney Gloria Allred, who represented Stevens.

Stevens, a Ventura County resident who worked for Vons for 25 years, was fired in May 2004. He sued the company that November.

During a monthlong trial, Stevens testified the supervisor subjected him to various forms harassment. In addition to making sexual remarks, Stevens told jurors the supervisor at one point simulated sex with a feather duster.

"I hope my victory will inspire others to come forward if they are being mistreated at work knowing that the law protects them," Stevens, 48, said in a statement.

Vons intends to appeal, said its spokeswoman, Sandra Calderon.

"We do not think that the evidence supported any of Mr. Stevens' claims and believe the damage award was excessive," Calderon said.

Vons, a unit of Safeway Inc., has 325 stores in Southern Califonia and Nevada, according to its Web site.

(Excerpt) Read more at lasvegassun.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: california; gloriaallred; jackpot; justice; safeway; sexualharrassment; vons

1 posted on 10/27/2006 11:28:32 PM PDT by teldon30
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To: teldon30

I was going to say, "good for the goose, good for the gander", but maybe some other pithy saying would be safer....


2 posted on 10/27/2006 11:32:12 PM PDT by ArmstedFragg
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To: teldon30
Stevens told jurors the supervisor at one point simulated sex with a feather duster.

Geez, there's what? two, three hundred thousand right there. Horrible - can't imagine it.

... but I wish I could! BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

3 posted on 10/27/2006 11:37:43 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: teldon30
These stupid suits need to be ended. Economic loss of 1.7 million? He works for a damn grocery store - 1.7 million represents 25 years of employment.

I remember when Republicans used to speak about tort reform. But it, like so much else, has fallen off the edge. Damn I miss when people actually ran for office, rather than running under the plank of 'it doesn't matter what I think, just think of what they'll do.'

4 posted on 10/27/2006 11:39:43 PM PDT by kingu (No, I don't use sarcasm tags - it confuses people.)
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To: kingu

Sad to say...but those days are over :(


5 posted on 10/27/2006 11:41:45 PM PDT by teldon30 (disgruntled 2nd class)
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To: martin_fierro; Slings and Arrows; Millee; Xenalyte

Reverse Sexual Harassment ping


6 posted on 10/27/2006 11:43:49 PM PDT by sully777 (You have flies in your eyes--Catch-22)
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To: teldon30
The sexual harrassment laws are gender-neutral. A man has much right to be protected from a female boss's attempts to condition work, promotion or pay raises on an exchange of sexual favors as much as a woman has a right to be protected from a male's boss attempts to make her workplace experience miserable if she does not submit to his sexual advances. Quite simply, making sexual demands upon a subordinate employee can expose a company to liability. Vons found out the hard way what is not to take a sexual harrassment complaint with the serious attention it deserved.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

7 posted on 10/27/2006 11:46:21 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: sully777
A real life version of a Michael Critchton novel that involved a reverse sexual harrassment suit. If memory serves, it was titled Disclosure.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

8 posted on 10/27/2006 11:47:53 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: kingu

After he pays Allred's undoubtedly-exorbitant fee, he'll probably have enough left for a couple of trips to the grocery store (likely not Vons).


9 posted on 10/28/2006 12:02:36 AM PDT by JennysCool
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To: JennysCool
I assume on appeal it will probably be reduced to $4 million. Allred collects a third of it so he'll wind up with $2.7 million. He could invest it, buy a second home or go into business. Any way you look at it, he would be set up for the rest of his life.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

10 posted on 10/28/2006 12:07:09 AM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: JennysCool
Yup, this is California, so of course, there's a law about his attorney's fees. One third would be the highest contingency fee that Alfred can collect, but you can bet that Alfred will be collecting his court fees from Vons as well.
11 posted on 10/28/2006 12:10:22 AM PDT by kingu (No, I don't use sarcasm tags - it confuses people.)
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To: teldon30

This idiocy amounts to a 6 million dollar payday for parasite Gloria Aldred. Vons will be forking over that much. I can only hope a judge reduces the settlement. What kind of retards were on the jury? Retards who hate corporations and capitalism. They hate because workers have been treated like shit for the last 30 years while management and stockholders have been taking a greater proportion of corporate profits .

Such verdicts are lousy but are the little guys way of lashing out blindly


12 posted on 10/28/2006 12:14:06 AM PDT by dennisw (Life is a tragedy for those who feel, and a comedy for those who think.)
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To: kingu
One third would be the highest contingency fee that Alfred can collect, but you can bet that Alfred will be collecting his court fees from Vons as well.

Gloria Aldred is a she, but the confusion is understandable.

13 posted on 10/28/2006 12:18:32 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Natalie Maines fears me...)
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To: Slings and Arrows

I'm sure you'll be sued by her next week for gender profiling. :)


14 posted on 10/28/2006 12:20:01 AM PDT by kingu (No, I don't use sarcasm tags - it confuses people.)
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To: Slings and Arrows
LOL! Anyway, my take is the jury award is excessive and it will likely be slashed on appeal. But Vons still has to take it up the chin because they didn't listen to their own employee's grievance.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

15 posted on 10/28/2006 12:20:25 AM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: kingu

:) Blood from a turnip, FRiend.


16 posted on 10/28/2006 12:31:23 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Natalie Maines fears me...)
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To: goldstategop

Agree re the award. Re the original complaint, not enough info; I'd like to hear Von's side of it.


17 posted on 10/28/2006 12:38:39 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Natalie Maines fears me...)
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To: dr_lew
Stevens told jurors the supervisor at one point simulated sex with a feather duster.
Geez, there's what? two, three hundred thousand right there. Horrible - can't imagine it.... but I wish I could! BWAHAHAHAHAHA!


Kind of like that old riddle about the difference between erotic and kinky?

Erotic is when one uses a feather during intimacy.

KINKY is when you use the whole CHICKEN!
18 posted on 10/28/2006 12:41:00 AM PDT by mkjessup (The Shah doesn't look so bad now, eh? But nooo, Jimmah said the Ayatollah was a 'godly' man.)
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To: teldon30
Alternate universe headline for this story:

Nonsense of Boss Mons Costs Vons Tons of Cents

 

19 posted on 10/28/2006 12:53:51 AM PDT by snarks_when_bored
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To: teldon30

I hope Safeway files an appeal to have the award lowered to about $250,000.


20 posted on 10/28/2006 12:58:38 AM PDT by Dustbunny (The BIBLE - Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth)
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To: kingu
What I want to know is when the hell somebody in Washington is going to do something about the out of control suits in healthcare that is driving insurance through the roof. I meet doctors everyday and you just would not believe the stories they tell me...Obstetricians for one paying upwards of $250 THOUSAND dollars a year in insurance! Can you imagine? Just to deliver a freggin` baby they has to pay a quarter of a mill a year in litigation insurance so some crackhead who delivers a kid with flippers doesn`t take his house.

I had jury duty a few years ago, and I couldn`t take it...Every case they called me for was a malpractice suit, and I actually got into a heated debate with one lawyer calling him a freggin` leech. It was ridiculous, some guy who doesn`t see a doctor for 15 years and he`s blaming the doc because he has terminal cancer, stuff like that. And then they line up jurors who they know will believe any BS they say, and they end up awarding some moron $20 million and as a result the insurance goes up even more.

I mean think about it, if car mechanics were sued at the level the health care profession is, it would cost you $50 grand to get a fan belt put in! This nonsense has got to stop, but all you get is "oh we need national healthcare" from the democrats. This new movie Michael Moore is making on healthcare, how much you want to bet not once will he mention out of control lawsuits? I`ll bet anything that whole movie will portray doctors as greedy bastards and lawyers as the heroes.


21 posted on 10/28/2006 1:07:45 AM PDT by Screamname (Islam: born 610 A.D Judiasm: Born 3700 B.C.Tell me again about the demands of Muslims over Israel.)
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To: Screamname

You weren't clear in your post...come on...tell us how you really feel....








just kidding...i agree wit' ya ;)


22 posted on 10/28/2006 1:18:40 AM PDT by teldon30 (disgruntled 2nd class)
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To: dennisw

/


23 posted on 10/28/2006 1:57:07 AM PDT by dennisw (Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned and her lawyer)
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To: Slings and Arrows; kingu
Blood from a turnip.

Yeah, but don't ever try that one on the IRS; believe me they CAN do it.

24 posted on 10/28/2006 2:21:51 AM PDT by HKMk23 (PRO-LIFE: Because a Person's a Person, no matter how small.)
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To: Screamname

It would be a step in the right direction if punitive awards went to the state, a non-profit, or a charity. Why should the plaintif (and his attorney) receive it -- he's already been compensated for economic loss and emotional distress.


25 posted on 10/28/2006 4:45:46 AM PDT by robertpaulsen
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To: teldon30

We'll need to see pictures of the female supervisor to make a final judgement on this case.

;^)


26 posted on 10/28/2006 5:36:25 AM PDT by Disambiguator (If the Democrats were a stock, I would short them.)
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To: snarks_when_bored

"You're a godd@mn genius, Snarks!"
27 posted on 10/28/2006 6:20:49 AM PDT by sully777 (You have flies in your eyes--Catch-22)
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To: kingu; All

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1727271/posts

Tort Reform Texas Style New laws devastate plaintiff and defense firms alike


28 posted on 10/28/2006 7:09:32 AM PDT by HuntsvilleTxVeteran ("Remember the Alamo, Goliad and WACO, It is Time for a new San Jacinto")
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To: teldon30
"I hope my victory will inspire others to come forward if and pretend they are being mistreated at work knowing that the law protects can be mis-applied and reward them," Stevens, 48, said in a statement.

This is a start, but seems inadequate somehow.

29 posted on 10/28/2006 7:53:34 AM PDT by pilipo
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To: teldon30
Where do we find 12 people who can reach these decisions?

Are they imported from a special asylum in Graz or is there a an inbreeding farm in Appalachia where plaintiff's attorney go to strike gold.

30 posted on 10/28/2006 8:07:10 AM PDT by Amerigomag
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To: Amerigomag
Where do we find 12 people who can reach these decisions?

From the same pool Jerry Springer gets his guests from.

31 posted on 10/28/2006 8:13:31 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Natalie Maines fears me...)
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To: sully777
Hey stud, great ping!!

Oops dropped my pen, mind getting that for me??? ;o)

32 posted on 10/28/2006 9:13:18 AM PDT by Millee (Tagline free since 10/20/06)
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To: ArmstedFragg

To the trial lawyers who cook up our laws, we are all geese.


33 posted on 10/28/2006 10:07:26 AM PDT by Tribune7 (But Wolf, there's a difference between news and terrorist propaganda.)
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To: Amerigomag

No. California has plenty to farm. Land of fruits and nuts, you know.


34 posted on 10/28/2006 10:15:41 AM PDT by Mashood
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To: sully777
"You're a godd@mn genius, Snarks!"

"It's a curse, Sully."

35 posted on 10/28/2006 6:01:19 PM PDT by snarks_when_bored
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To: snarks_when_bored

(phew)...glad you understood my post as a joke.


36 posted on 10/28/2006 6:11:41 PM PDT by sully777 (You have flies in your eyes--Catch-22)
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To: sully777

(laugh) I've just gotten back to posting. No worries, mate!


37 posted on 10/28/2006 6:13:11 PM PDT by snarks_when_bored
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To: Millee

There was an old SNL skit with Lily Tomlin (early SNL) She was a construction worker with all the other female actresses. IIRC, Dan Akroid walks by the site and all the women start whooping and hollering. Akroid starts to feel harassed and runs off.

My FIL's brothers worked in plants during WWII and told me that the women were very blue without any men around. The three brothers were teens and were subjected to much harassment, which they took in stride.


38 posted on 10/28/2006 6:15:52 PM PDT by sully777 (You have flies in your eyes--Catch-22)
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