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Police officer wins race discrimination lawsuit

The hiring and promotion process for any line of work can be long and complicated. It may involve an assessment of work experience, an evaluation of skills and even an analysis of test scores that can set one candidate apart from another. However, if an individual is awarded a job or a promotion over another who is more qualified, there may be a case made for legal action. A recent case is drawing headlines and may be of interest to anyone in law enforcement in Colorado, as it involves a police lieutenant who accused the town of race discrimination.

The lieutenant who sued is a white man who contends he was passed over for the job of police chief. He states that the Hispanic man who got the job was less qualified. He also says the man hired received lower test scores than he did.

He commenced a race discrimination suit against the New York village where he was employed. He won the suit and was awarded $1.35 million, $200,000 of which was designated for punitive damages. The town contends that there were no grounds for the suit and that officials do not agree with the outcome of the case.

A race discrimination suit, in Colorado or elsewhere, must be established in court by a preponderance of the evidence. It may entail eyewitness testimony, emails and/or other evidence that documents the illegal conduct, whether it is in connection with a promotion, performance review, hiring or other job action. Anyone who feels they have been victimized in this manner at work may benefit from knowing their rights and assessing the viability of commencing legal proceedings to enforce them.

Source: CBS New York, "White Police Lieutenant Awarded $1.35 Million In Racial Discrimination Lawsuit", , May 30, 2014

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