CHARLESTON -- A former employee is suing the Kanawha Public Service District after he claims he was wrongfully terminated from his employment because of violation of the West Virginia Whistle Blower statute.

The Board of Directors of Kanawha Public Service District and David Howell, the chairman of the Board, were also named as defendants in the suit.

Sam M. Hope II was employed by the defendants from Oct. 14, 1995, until Sept. 13, according to a complaint filed Sept. 14 in Kanawha Circuit Court.

Hope claims prior to his termination on Sept. 13, he had complained to the West Virginia Ethics Commission and to the Public Service Commission of West Virginia concerning illegal, unethical and/or improper practices occurring at Kanawha PSD either under the watch or by the direction of Howell.

The defendants’ actions in terminating Hope’s employment constitute a violation if West Virginia’s Whistle Blower statute, according to the suit.

Hope claims his employment was terminated in retaliation for complaints he made to the ethics commission and the public service commission.

As a result of the defendants’ actions, Hope suffered lost wages; great annoyance and inconvenience; mental anguish; pain and suffering’ and other damages, according to the suit.

Hope is seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre-judgment interest. He is being represented by Michael T. Clifford.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge James C. Stucky.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 12-C-1876

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