Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Do Not Use This as a Defense--Just Sayin'

One of the reasons why I like employment law is that no matter how many types of cases you see, there is always something even more bizarre around the next corner. So let's turn the corner and our attention to Bob Filner, the Mayor of San Diego, a 70 year-old Democrat who apparently never met a woman he didn't try to grope or sexually harass. In fact, things were so bad that his honor's staff apparently had a rule that women were not allowed in to see him without an escort, under any circumstances. At last count, there were at least 10 women who have come forward indicating that Filner inappropriately touched them or propositioned them. And he has only been the mayor since November.

All of this would be bizarre enough, but Filner’s lawyer rolled out a legal defense, or at least a way of paying for a legal defense, that is almost as insulting as the actual harassment itself. Filner’s counsel alleged that the City of San Diego should have to pay for the mayor’s lawsuit defense (Filner’s former director of communications has filed a harassment lawsuit) because Filner never received mandatory sexual harassment training from the City. This is the functional equivalent of somewhat defending a murder claim by saying that they should be given a break because no one ever told them that it was illegal to kill people.

For those of you who are confused about whether this is an intelligent strategy – please refer to headline at the top of this article and let's hope the taxpayers of California’s second largest city not only reject this silly claim but also boot this guy out of office

UPDATE:  I seriously can't make this stuff up.

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