U.S. Marshal says security firm violated ADA

By Carol Ostrow | Mar 12, 2015

A former U.S. marshal has sued his employer for alleged violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act during his service.

Ernest Harrell, of Beaumont, filed a lawsuit Jan. 12 in U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Texas against Akal Security Inc., alleging unlawful discrimination.

According to the complaint, Harrell was employed in law enforcement for more than 40 years and had been a court security officer with the U.S. Marshals Service since 2001, when he lost his job in 2014 due to a false perception that he had diabetes.

The suit says confusion started in 2014 over misinterpreted medical information, and not only does Harrell not have diabetes but it is illegal to terminate a worker for that reason. Akal Security could have admitted to its error and reinstated him but Harrell was terminated May 20, 2014, the suit states.

The lawsuit says Akal subjected Harrell to laborious and time-consuming testing, violating the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Harrell seeks: actual, compensatory and exemplary damages for medical expenses; lost wages and benefits; attorneys fees; expenses; and costs. He is represented by attorneys Katherine Butler of Butler & Harris in Houston, and John W. Griffin, Jr. of Marek, Griffin & Knaupf in Victoria.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas case number: 1:15-CV-00010-MAC


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