Sanctions sought: LaBelleCo claims Arnold & Itkins attorney should have known suit was ‘fictitious’

By David Yates | Dec 6, 2018

BEAUMONT – Last August, Jake Kemp filed suit against LaBelleCo Fab, seeking more than $1 million in damages for an on-the-job injury.

On Nov. 30, LaBelleCo filed a counterclaim and motion for sanctions, asserting the lawsuit is “frivolous” and that Kemp’s attorney, Kurt Arnold of Arnold & Itkin, should have known the lawsuit was “fictitious.”

According to the original petition, on June 20, 2017 Kemp was working at LaBelleCo’s plant and was severely injured when a tool he was working electrocuted him and threw him against other equipment.

He alleges he has suffered injuries to his head and other parts of the body that required extensive and ongoing medical treatment.


Kemp alleges the company failed to provide proper and safe equipment and failed to properly train and supervise their employees.

A full year of discovery has taken place since the lawsuit was filed, and LaBelleCo maintains that the allegations still “do have evidentiary support.”

The company claims the suit is “groundless in fact” and brought for “the purposes of harassment.”

LaBelloCo is seeking sanctions and actual damages, including recovery of attorney’s fees.

Court records also show the company filed a motion for summary judgment on Nov. 2, arguing there is no evidence to support Kemp’s claims.

Beaumont attorney John Morgan represents LaBelloCo.

Kemp is represented by Kurt B. Arnold, Caj D. Boatright, Alison Baimbridge and Roland Christensen of Arnold & Itkin LLP in Houston.

Judge Kent Walston, 58th District Court, is presiding over the case.

Jefferson County District Court case No. A-200466

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