Annie Cosby Jan. 29, 2015, 11:31am


A Smith County man is suing over claims his employer denied him promotions based upon his race.

Richard Tunstle filed a lawsuit Dec. 2, 2014, in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas against: Oil States Energy Services; Oil States; Oil States Energy Services; Oil States Management Inc.; and Oil States International Inc., citing employment discrimination.

According to the complaint, Tunstle, an African-American male, was working for Specialty Rental Tools & Supply, which later merged into Oil States Energy Services, between 2009 and 2010, when he repeatedly applied for a promotion to district manager, which was denied. The complaint states he asked management about one such position and an area manager told him, through the use of a racially offensive term, that no African-American would be given the position, which was filled by a Caucasian who continuously used racially offensive terms. Tunstle says after complaints of the offensive behavior, the new district manager finally was terminated in April 2013, and Tunstle was forced to go through an interview process before finally being promoted in July 2013.

Tunstle is represented by attorney William S. Hommel Jr. of Hommel Law Firm in Tyler.

Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas case number: 2:14-CV-01086.

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