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Trucking Lawsuit

Trucking Lawsuit

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Published by Eric Nicholson

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Published by: Eric Nicholson on May 15, 2012
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05/15/2012

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Plaintiffs’ Original Complaint and Jury Demand
347525.1
Page 1
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF TEXASDALLAS DIVISIONRICKY L. CURRY, JOHN D. BEAN,PAUL N. ELWELL, RICHARD L.HARRIS, JAMES R. THURMONDAND KEITH VESSELSPlaintiffsVS.CENTRAL FREIGHT LINES, INC.Defendant§§§§§§§§§§§CIVIL ACTION NO: _______________ PLAINTIFFS’ ORIGINAL COMPLAINT AND JURY DEMANDPlaintiffs RICKY L. CURRY, JOHN D. BEAN, PAUL N. ELWELL, RICHARD L.HARRIS, JAMES R. THURMOND AND KEITH VESSELS (hereinafter “Plaintiffs”) file thisOriginal Complaint and Jury Demand against Defendant Central Freight Lines, Inc. (hereinafter “Defendant” or “Central”), and respectfully show the following:
Nature of the Action
1.This Complaint, brought pursuant to the Age Discrimination Employment Act(hereinafter “ADEA” or “the Act”), 29 U.S.C. §§ 621 through 634, seeks damages due toDefendant’s age-based discriminatory acts against Plaintiffs relating to their employment withDefendant.
Jurisdiction and Venue
2.The Court has original jurisdiction over this lawsuit pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331,with reference to the ADEA, 29 U.S.C. §§ 621-34.3.Venue is proper in this District because a substantial part of the events or omissions
Case 3:10-cv-01954-K Document 1 Filed 09/29/10 Page 1 of 9 PageID 1
 
Plaintiffs’ Original Complaint and Jury Demand
347525.1
Page 2
giving rise to this lawsuit occurred in this District. Additionally, one or more of the Plaintiffs residein this District.
Parties
4.Plaintiff Ricky L. Curry is an individual residing in Dallas County, Texas.5.Plaintiff John D. Bean is an individual residing in Dallas County, Texas.6.Plaintiff Paul N. Elwell is an individual residing in Tarrant County, Texas.7.Plaintiff Richard L. Harris is an individual residing in Dallas County, Texas.8.Plaintiff James R. Thurmond is an individual residing in Dallas County, Texas.9.Plaintiff Keith Vessels is an individual residing in Kaufman County, Texas.10.Defendant is a Texas Corporation with its principal place of business in Waco, Texas.Defendant conducts a substantial business in Dallas County, Texas, and employed all Plaintiffs inDallas County, Texas.11.Defendant may be served with process by serving its registered agent Linda Kutni at5601 West Waco Drive, Waco, Texas 76710.12.Defendant is an “employer” pursuant to the ADEA’s definition found at 29 U.S.C.§ 630(b). Specifically, Defendant is a corporation engaged in an industry affecting commerce whichhas twenty or more employees for each working day in each of twenty or more calendar weeks in thecurrent or preceding calendar year.
Facts
13.Plaintiffs were all loyal and competent employees of Defendant for a number of years.Specifically, Defendant hired Plaintiff Curry on or around April 18, 1977, Plaintiff Bean on or around May 22, 1978, Plaintiff Elwell on or around September 8, 1978, Plaintiff Thurmond on or around March 5, 1979, Plaintiff Vessels on or around April 9, 1979 and Plaintiff Harris on or around
Case 3:10-cv-01954-K Document 1 Filed 09/29/10 Page 2 of 9 PageID 2
 
Plaintiffs’ Original Complaint and Jury Demand
347525.1
Page 3
October 21, 1996. Plaintiffs were employed at Defendant’s Dallas Terminal in Dallas County, Texasas full-time Dockworkers.14.At some point in time during 2005 – 2006, Defendant made a decision to terminatecertain Dockworkers due to an “economic downturn in business.” Defendant’s Reduction In Force(RIF) began with the termination of two employees, ages 50 and 63, on December 15, 2006.15.On August 31, 2007, as part of its RIF, Defendant terminated Plaintiffs, along witheight other Dockworkers. Ten of the fourteen terminated Dockworkers were over the age of 40.16.During the months before Plaintiffs’ termination, Defendant assigned Plaintiffs andother older workers more difficult tasks in an effort to cause Plaintiffs’ to not meet daily quotas. Asa result, during this same timeframe, Plaintiffs were allegedly “written up” for various companyviolations. Prior to Defendant’s decision to initiate the RIF, Defendant had given Plaintiffs, few, if any, minor “write-ups.”17.During Plaintiffs’ employment, older workers were referred to by derogatory age-related names and epithets. At the time of Plaintiffs’ termination, Plaintiffs Curry, Bean, Elwell,Thurmond, Vessells and Harris were ages 50, 51, 50, 58, 54, and 53, respectively. All Plaintiffswere over the age of 40.18.In the eighteen months leading up to Plaintiffs’ termination and despite the need foa RIF, according to Defendant’s own records, Defendant hired a minimum of 200 part-timeDockworkers. A significant portion of these newly-hired Dockworkers were under the age of 40.In the months following Plaintiffs’ termination, Defendant continued to hire younger Dockworkersdespite Defendant’s alleged “economic downturn in business.” Some of these “part-time”Dockworkers worked over forty hours per week and, therefore, were entitled to overtime pay.19.Furthermore, the newly-hired “part-time” Dockworkers performed the same duties
Case 3:10-cv-01954-K Document 1 Filed 09/29/10 Page 3 of 9 PageID 3

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