CHARLESTON - A St. Albans woman fired from her claims adjuster job is claiming she was discriminated against because of her race and gender.

Toni Boddy filed a lawsuit May 30 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Frank Gates Service Co. and Peabody Coal Co. through Dunbar attorney Eunice Green.

Boddy says she was employed Feb. 16-April 25, 2005 as a claims adjuster for Frank Gates Service Co. Three days before she was terminated, she says she performed a pre-audit on Peabody Coal and found that none of the employees passed.

"The following Monday, Plaintiff returned to work and was informed that she was being terminated," the complaint says. "The initial reasoning was that Plaintiff 'did not fit the image required for the job.'"

Boddy says she is a "heavy-set black Christian woman, well-dressed and neat appearance."

She adds that during her exit interview for her termination, she was told she was fired because of the pre-audit she performed and that it was a probationary discharge, though Boddy maintains she was never informed of a probation period.

Boddy says she was hired within an hour of her interview and left her previous job of five years to work at Frank Gates.

"It was not until a representative from Peabody entered the work place that Plaintiff's appearance and performance became an issue," the complaint says.

Boddy is seeking punitive damages, damages for tortuous interference by Peabody, a reinstatement to her position, damages for emotional distress and trauma and back pay.

Judge Jennifer Bailey Walker has been assigned the case.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-1029

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