Weatherford termination case moved to federal court

By Kyla Asbury | Apr 29, 2015

CHARLESTON – A man is suing Weatherford U.S. LP after he claims his employment was wrongfully terminated.

Keith Eugene Shafer was hired by Weatherford as a shop technician on Jan. 10, 2011, where he continued to work until Oct. 5, according to a complaint initially filed Feb. 27 in Kanawha Circuit Court and removed to federal court on April 9.

Shafer claims his employment was wrongfully, recklessly, carelessly, willfully, wantonly and unlawfully terminated on that day in retaliation for reporting a workplace injury.

The plaintiff seriously injured his back on Oct. 5 and approximately 8:30 p.m., while acting in the court and scope of his employment while opening a stuck valve, according to the suit.

Shafer claims he immediately reported the incident to the safety representatives and was directed to contact Axiom Medical by telephone.

Axiom directed him to take Ibuprofen, place ice on the injury and wear a back brace, according to the suit.

Shafer claims Chris Fox, his immediate supervisor, directed a trainee to finish Shafer's work duties and directed Shafer to report to a different job location, however, Shafer informed him he was in too much pain and had to go home. Fox then directed him to take the rest of the day off.

On Oct. 7, Shafer received a text message from Fox requesting a statement outlining the events of the night that he was injured and he sent the statement via text message as requested and soon thereafter, Shafer received a phone call informing him his employment was terminated, according to the suit.

Shafer claims his employment was terminated in retaliation and was discrimination against him.

Shafer is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. He is being represented by Erika Klie Kolenich and Karl Kolenich of Klie Law Offices PLLC.

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia case number: 2:15-cv-04315

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