CHARLESTON -- Three former employees are suing A&W Painting after they claim the company refuses to return their personal tools they used while working for the company.

Allie Smaidi and Waleed Smeedy, supervisors of A&W Painting, also were named in the suit.

The three employees -- Jerry W. Gunther, Brian Halsey and Michael C. Huff -- used many of their own personal tools to perform work for A&W, according to three separate complaints filed June 25 in Kanawha Circuit Court.

On June 26, 2008, Gunther claims after suffering a work-related injury he was taken to the hospital and was unaware that he would not be returning to work.

After the accident, Gunther realized he would not be able to return to work and approached the defendants and asked that his tools be returned to him, but the defendants refused to return them, according to the suits. Gunther claims the value of the tools was approximately $5,750.

Halsey and Huff both quit working for A&W in July 2008 and claim that the defendants refused to return their tools. Halsey's tools were valued at approximately $1,170 and Huff's tools were valued at approximately $1,120, according to the suits.

Gunther, Halsey and Huff are seeking compensatory damages. They are being represented by Thomas F. Basile.

Gunther's case been assigned to Circuit Judge Jennifer Bailey. Halsey and Huff's cases have been assigned to Circuit Judge Louis Bloom.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 10-C-1154, 10-C-1155 and 10-C-1156

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