All Claims Against City Dismissed in Lawsuit Brought by Former Police Officer
Dan Hartzog, Jr. obtained dismissal of all claims in a lawsuit brought by a former police officer for a City. The officer had been fired from the City for attending court for a personal matter while on duty, arriving late, and failing to prepare proper paperwork for a warrant. In response to a subsequent request from a prospective employer, the HR director stated that the officer had been fired for “failing to show up for work and for falsifying paperwork.” Plaintiff sued for defamation, unfair deceptive trade practices, and punitive damages. Defendants obtained dismissal of all claims on the grounds that Plaintiff could not overcome the NY Times v. Sullivan actual malice standard, and that the matter did not involve “commerce,” which is required for an unfair and deceptive trade practices claim.