About the Firm

The law firm of Sharpless & Stavola, P.A. provides top quality, aggressive legal representation to individuals and businesses throughout North Carolina. A core practice area of the firm is employment litigation, where our attorneys regularly represent parties in disputes arising from all aspects of the employer-employee relationship. Employment issues frequently litigated by the firm include claims of discriminatory hiring and employment practices, sexual harassment, retaliation and wrongful discharge, wage and hour violations, breach of contract and no-compete covenants, and employee benefits litigation. In addition to confronting claims of traditional employment discrimination, the firm represents parties with respect to statutory rights and obligations imposed by the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family Medical Leave Act.

On behalf of our clients, we regularly appear in all North Carolina state and federal courts and administrative agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the North Carolina Department of Labor, and the Office of Federal Contractor Compliance Programs (OFCCP).

Sharpless & Stavola, P.A. is a Martindale-Hubbell “AV” rated law firm. Please review the firm’s webpage for additional information, including individual attorney profiles. The firm's telephone number is 336-333-6400.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Wake County Jury Awards $3.75 Million to Whistleblower

Last month a Wake County jury awarded a large verdict of $3.75 million to a former State Highway Patrolman who proved that his termination from the force was in punishment or retaliation over whistleblower activity.  The plaintiff and former trooper, Reginald Newberne, alleged that he was fired after he had truthfully reported information about possible excess use of force by other officers in connection with a DWI stop.  After a week long trial, the jury agreed that Newberne was unlawfully terminated in retaliation for breaking a "code of silence" that prohibited officers from reporting misconduct by their peers.

The size of the verdict is a stark reminder of the dangerous nature of whistleblower or retaliation claims.  Juries are often times very troubled when it is proven that an employer punishes an employee for exposing its unlawful activity.  We often here the adage that "the cover-up is worse than the crime."  Whistleblower cases, such as this one, tend to similarly demonstrate the danger of an employer's decision to punish employees who attempt to disrupt a cover-up by reporting misconduct.

If you have questions about whistleblower protections, please see our previous discussion of recent whistleblower developments or feel free to call attorney Brian Alligood, an experienced North Carolina employment law attorney, at (336) 333-6388 for counsel.

No comments:

Post a Comment