CHARLESTON -- A woman is suing Racing Corporation of West Virginia after she claims she was discriminated against because of her gender.

Racing Corporation of West Virginia is doing business as Mardi Gras Casino & Resort.

Cari S. Caldwell was employed by the defendant to work as a roulette dealer, according to a complaint filed Oct. 31 in Kanawha Circuit Court.

Caldwell claims on March 18, 2010, she was suspended without pay on the same day two other male employees were also suspended without pay for leaving non-value roulette chips unsecured on the roulette table.

After the defendant determined Caldwell and the two male employees did not intentionally leave non-value chips unsecured, the male employees were permitted to return to work, according to the suit.

Caldwell claims she was given a written warning for carelessness and "violation of company policies and procedures."

After the two male employees were permitted to return immediately to their previous positions, the defendant did not allow Caldwell to return to her position and instead, Caldwell remained suspended without pay for an additional time.

Caldwell claims she was later informed that she would not be permitted to return to her former position for six months and instead of terminating her employment, she was offered a position in housekeeping.

In April 2010, a position became available for a chip runner and Caldwell was permitted to transfer out of housekeeping and to the chip runner position, but it was not until September 2010 that she was able to return to her position as a roulette dealer, according to the suit.

Caldwell claims the defendant discriminated against her because of her gender by allowing the male employees to immediately return to their former positions, but not allowing her to for six months.

The defendant violated the West Virginia Human Rights Act by discriminating against Caldwell, according to the suit.

Caldwell is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. She is being represented by Maria W. Hughes and Paul Stroebel.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Louis H. Bloom.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 11-C-1947

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