HUNTINGTON – A former employee is suing Tri-State Food Systems and KFC of the Tri-State after she claims her employment was wrongfully terminated.

Kasey Roberts began employment with Tri-State Food Systems Inc. and KFC of the Tri-State Inc. on Sept. 29, according to a complaint filed Jan. 20 in Cabell Circuit Court.

Roberts claims on Dec. 2, while working within the scope of her employment, she observed a co-worker, Jennifer Cupp, receive marijuana through the drive-thru window and immediately directed her to discard the marijuana.

Shortly after advising Cupp to discard the marijuana, Roberts contacted her supervisor, Nick Adkins, and was directed by Adkins to require Cupp to complete a Personal Improvement Plan and to send her home from work prematurely, according to the suit.

Cupp became hostile and agitated toward Roberts and threatened the job security of other management personnel as a result of the improvement plan and being sent home from work early.

Roberts claims she sent Adkins a text that Cupp threatened all management personnel's jobs and that she had written her up and sent her home.

On Dec. 5, Roberts received a text from Adkins, advising her not to report to work the following day and on Dec. 6, she received a call from Arguest Knipp, the human resources manager for the defendants, advising her that Knipp would contact her after further investigating the incident.

R0berts claims on Dec. 18, she attended a meeting with Knipp regarding the incident and Knipp made no representation that her employment was in jeopardy of being terminated, however on Dec. 20, she received a letter that was dated Dec. 18, advising her that her employment was terminated.

On Dec. 22, Roberts received another letter from the defendant, this one dated Dec. 9, advising her that she was being terminated or failing to act in a professional way, according to the suit.

Roberts claims she never received a personal improvement plan prior to her termination and never received a verbal or written warning regarding her conduct.

The defendants terminated Roberts' employment in retaliation for her reporting Cupp's possession of marijuana, according to the suit.

Roberts claims her employment was wrongfully terminated, which caused her damages.

Roberts is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. She is being represented by James D. McQueen Jr. and Ralph J. Hagy of McQueen Davis PLLC.

The case is assigned to Circuit Judge Christopher D. Chiles.

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 15-c-54

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