CHARLESTON - A Charleston man says his supervisor forced him to quit his maintenance job because he filed a Workers' Compensation claim.

Timothy Walker filed the lawsuit July 28 in Kanawha Circuit Court against T.M. Associates Management and Sharon Kreiling, alleging that when he told Kreiling he was quitting she replied, "I've been wanting to get rid of you anyway."

Charleston attorney Matthew Criswell is handling Walker's case. Walker says he has not paid for overtime work he performed, too, in addition to being retaliated and discriminated against.

On Feb. 6, he says he hurt his lower back while working and was placed on a temporary Workers' Compensation leave of absence from work.

On March 20, he says his doctor allowed him to return to work, provided he wear a back brace. When Walker requested that the defendants supply the brace, he says they gave him one that didn't fit and would not replace it.

"In addition to Defendants' failure to provide Plaintiff with a usable back brace, Plaintiff noticed a stark difference in how he was treated by his superiors," the complaint says.

Walker says he overheard a conversation between two of his superiors, one of whom remarked, "The only way to get rid of Tim is to attack his job performance."

He says three days later he was written up for failing to complete the maintenance work on an apartment prior to the tenants moving in.

"Oddly, the work which Plaintiff allegedly did not complete was assigned to another maintenance man, Al Hancock, and was to be completed while Plaintiff was off on his Workers' Compensation leave of absence," the complaint says.

Three days later, Walker says he was the only employee subjected to a drug test. A month later, Walker says the situation became unbearable and he was forced to quit.

Walker is seeking wages that he says weren't paid, punitive damages and court costs.

Judge Charlie King has been assigned the case.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-1490

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