CHARLESTON – Three lawsuits have been filed against McDonald’s after the plaintiffs claim they were sexually harassed by a co-worker.
J.W. Ebert Corporation and Gustavia Crowder were also named as defendants in the suit.
Leslie Hutchinson, Pamela Beaver and Hope Short worked with Crowder at the defendants’ corporation and, during their employment, they were subjected to sexual harassment and hostile work environment by Crowder, according to three complaints filed in Kanawha Circuit Court.
The plaintiffs claim the harassment included Crowder making inappropriate comments of a sexual nature to the plaintiffs, as well as inappropriate physical contact with the plaintiffs.
The plaintiffs notified J.W. and McDonald’s about the sexual harassment and hostile work environment, however, both of the defendants responded inadequately to the situation, according to the suits.
After informing the defendants of the sexual harassment and hostile work environment, their employments were terminated, according to the suits.
The plaintiffs claim each of the defendants’ actions and inactions constituted sexual harassment and/or created a hostile work environment for the plaintiff, in violation of the West Virginia Human Rights Act.
The defendants’ actions were willful and malicious, according to the suits.
The plaintiffs claim the defendants were negligent and recklessly hired, retained and/or supervised Crowder as an employee, despite being on notice that he created a hostile work environment for its employees.
As a direct and proximate result of the defendants’ actions, the plaintiffs suffered lost wages and benefits when they were wrongfully terminated from their employment, according to the suit.
The plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages. They are being represented by Paul L. Frampton Jr. of Atkinson & Polak.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 17-C-1176, 17-C-1177, 17-C-1180