Willie Gary and Team File Multi-Million Dollar Lawsuit against City of Thomasville, Georgia and Thomasville Fire Department in Discrimination Cases
City of Thomasville, Thomasville Fire Department and Former Fire Chief and Assistant Fire Chief Also Named in Lawsuits Come under Fire after High-Ranking Firemen are Subjected to Racial and Ethnic Slurs and Unfair Treatment and Retaliation Based on Race
Trial attorney Willie Gary along with associate attorney Victor Swift of the Stuart, Florida based law firm of Gary, Williams, Parenti & Watson, P.L.L.C., and co-counsel E. Duane Jones of Decatur, Georgia have filed five (5) multi-million dollar lawsuits on behalf of their clients, high-ranking firemen with the Thomasville, Georgia Fire Department. The lawsuits were filed in an effort to expose the discriminatory actions that were taken by the Thomasville Fire Department and the former Fire Chief, Bryan Croft and former Assistant Fire Chief, Tim Connell. Individual complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission have also been filed.
The lawsuits contend that the plaintiffs, African American firefighters, were discriminated against because of race and were subjected to harassment, intimidation and an offensive hostile work environment. The plaintiffs include Ronnie Smith, Elma Johnson and Allen Powell, who were denied opportunities for training, promotions, merit increases and raises that were available for similarly situated white firemen with less training, experience and seniority; Derek Colson, who received racist E-mails from the former Fire Chief Bryan Croft; and, Curtis Bradshaw, who contends that he reported to work one day only to find a noose affixed to his bed. In addition, the suits contend that the Plaintiffs were subjected to flagrant derogatory racial comments.
“Our law firm takes these allegations very seriously and we will prosecute the claims to fullest extent,” commented Gary. “These clients are good people whose job is to protect and serve but who is protecting their rights? These are serious claims that could expose the Thomasville Fire Department to millions of dollars in damages,” continued Gary.
Gary is no stranger to seeking justice. Gary and his legal team are known for taking on some of the nation’s most powerful corporate giants. In 2014, a jury awarded Gary and his legal team an unprecedented $23.6 billion verdict against RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company. In 1995, a jury awarded Gary and his legal team a record-breaking, half-billion dollars against one of the world’s largest funeral chains, The Loewen Group. In addition, Gary is noted for winning a $240 million jury verdict in Orange County against the Walt Disney Corporation for his clients who alleged that Disney stole their idea for a sports theme park. In 2001, a jury awarded Gary a $139.6 million verdict for the Maris Distributing Company against Anheuser Busch.