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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY
LOUISVILLE DIVISION

WILLIAM ARMSTRONG, )
)
Plaintiff, )
)
vs. ) CASE NO. 3:17-CV-260-DJH
)
CITY OF WEST BUECHEL, )
)
and )
)
RICHARD RICHARDS, )
both individually and in his )
official capacity as Mayor )
of the City of West Buechel, )
Kentucky, )
)
Defendants. )

COMPLAINT AND DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL

I. NATURE OF THE CASE

1. Plaintiff, William Armstrong (“Armstrong”), by counsel, brings this action

against Defendants, the City of West Buechel, Kentucky (“West Buechel”) and Richard Richards

(“Mayor Richards”), both individually and in his capacity as Mayor of the City of West Buechel

(“Defendants”) alleging violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42

U.S.C. §2000e et. seq. and the Kentucky Civil Rights Act.

II. PARTIES

2. Armstrong is a resident of Jefferson County in the Commonwealth of Kentucky,

who at all times relevant to this action resided within the geographical boundaries of the Western

District of Kentucky.

3. West Buechel is a local government entity organized under Kentucky law.
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4. Mayor Richards is the duly elected Mayor of West Buechel, Kentucky, who, in

his official capacity, presides over city council meetings, acts as the head of the city and oversees

the city’s employees. Mayor Richards, in his official capacity, is located in West Buechel,

Kentucky. Mayor Richards, in his individual capacity, is an adult citizen residing in West

Buechel, Kentucky.

III. JURISDICTION AND VENUE

5. Jurisdiction is conferred on this Court over the subject matter of this litigation

pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1331; 28 U.S.C. §1343; 28 U.S.C. §1367 and 42 U.S.C. §2000e-5(f)(3).

6. Jurisdiction is conferred on Armstrong’s state law claims pursuant to 28 U.S.C.

§1367 because his state law claims arise from the same common nucleus of operative facts as his

federal law claims and all of his claims form a single case and controversy under Article III of

the United States Constitution.

7. West Buechel is an “employer” as that term is defined by KRS 344.030(2) and 42

U.S.C. §2000e(b).

8. Armstrong was an “employee” as that term is defined by KRS 344.030(5) and 42

U.S.C. §2000e(f).

9. Armstrong satisfied his obligation to exhaust his administrative remedies having

timely filed a Charge of Discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity

Commission (“EEOC”) against Defendant alleging discrimination based on his race. Armstrong

received the required Notice of Sue Rights and timely files this action.

10. A substantial part of the events, transactions, and occurrences relevant to this

lawsuit arose within the geographical environs of the Western District of Kentucky; thus, venue

is proper in this Court.

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IV. FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

11. Armstrong is African-American.

12. Armstrong was hired by Defendants on or about August 9, 2012 as a Maintenance

Worker and later served as the “Director of Public Works.” At all relevant times, Armstrong met

and/or exceeded Defendant’s legitimate performance expectations.

13. During his employment, Armstrong was the only African-American employed by

Defendants.

14. Throughout his employment, Armstrong was held to different standards in

comparison to the Caucasian employees, such as being required to perform the most strenuous

and dangerous jobs and not receiving assistance when he would request aid on certain jobs.

Armstrong was also subjected to a racially hostile work environment by City Council Member

Joe Mattingly, who said used the word “nigger” on two occasions while working with Armstrong

and called Armstrong “boy.” Gerald Chamberlain, one of Armstrong’s co-workers, would also

put his hands on Armstrong and push him to the side in front of Mayor Richards. Armstrong

reported this mistreatment on the basis of his race to Mayor Richards; however, no corrective

action was taken and the behavior continued.

15. In Spring 2015, there was a vacant position for a Maintenance Supervisor. This

vacant position was never advertised internally or externally, and as a result, Armstrong was

never given the opportunity to apply for this position. This position was filled by a Caucasian

individual.

16. On or about July 1, 2015, all city employees except for Armstrong received a

raise.

17. On August 13, 2015, Kimberly Richards, Mayor Richard’s wife, accused

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Armstrong of stealing from the city and insubordination.

18. In or about mid-August 2015, Mayor Richards advised Armstrong not to come

into work until further notice. No other information was provided.

19. After suffering from racial discrimination, Armstrong sent a letter to Mayor

Richards on or about August 20, 2015, complaining that he was being subjected to a hostile work

environment and requesting an update concerning his continued employment. Mayor Richards

did not respond.

20. On or about August 24, 2015, Armstrong sent a second letter to Mayor Richards

complaining about the work conditions and his mistreatment. Mayor Richards did not respond.

21. On or about August 26, 2015, Mayor Richards notified Armstrong of the

termination of his employment via text message. Mayor Richards did not provide Armstrong

with a reason for the termination of his employment.

V. CAUSES OF ACTION

COUNT I: RACE DISCRIMINATION- TITLE VII

22. Armstrong hereby incorporates by reference paragraphs one (1) through twenty-

one (21) of his Complaint as if the same were set forth at length herein.

23. Armstrong was subjected to different terms and conditions of his employment and

a hostile work environment based on his race.

24. Defendants’ actions are in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964,

42 U.S.C. §2000e et. seq.

25. Defendants’ actions were willful, intentional and done with reckless disregard for

Armstrong’s legally protected rights.

26. Armstrong has suffered damages as a result of Defendants’ unlawful actions.

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COUNT II: RACE DISCRIMINATION- KCRA

27. Armstrong hereby incorporates by reference paragraphs one (1) through twenty-

six (26) of his Complaint as if the same were set forth at length herein.

28. Armstrong was subjected to different terms and conditions of his employment and

a hostile work environment based on his race.

29. Defendants’ actions are in violation of the Kentucky Civil Rights Act, KRS

344.040.

30. Defendant’s actions were willful, intentional and done with reckless disregard for

Armstrong’s legally protected rights.

31. Armstrong has suffered damages as a result of Defendant’s unlawful actions

COUNT III: RETALIATION IN VIOLATION OF TITLE VII

32. Armstrong hereby incorporates by reference paragraphs one (1) through thirty-

one (31) of his Complaint as if the same were set forth at length herein.

33. Defendants retaliated against Armstrong for having complained of race

discrimination by terminating his employment.

34. Defendants’ actions violated the anti-retaliation provisions of Title VII of the

Civil Rights Act of 1964.

35. Defendants’ actions were intentional, malicious and done with reckless disregard

for Armstrong’s legally protected rights.

36. Armstrong has suffered damages as a result of Defendants’ actions.

COUNT IV: RETALIATION IN VIOLATION OF KCRA

37. Armstrong hereby incorporates by reference paragraphs one (1) through thirty-six

(36) of his Complaint as if the same were set forth at length herein.

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38. Defendants retaliated against Armstrong for having complained of race

discrimination by terminating his employment.

39. Defendants’ actions violated the anti-retaliation provisions of the Kentucky Civil

Rights Act, KRS 344.280(1).

40. Defendants’ actions were intentional, malicious and done with reckless disregard

for Armstrong’s legally protected rights.

41. Armstrong has suffered damages as a result of Defendants’ actions.

VI. REQUESTED RELIEF

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff, William Armstrong, respectfully requests that this Court enter

judgment in his favor and award him the following relief:

1. Reinstate Armstrong to the position, salary and seniority level he would have

enjoyed but for Defendants’ unlawful actions; and/or payment to Armstrong of front pay in lieu

thereof;

2. All wages, benefits, compensation and other monetary loss suffered as a result of

Defendants’ unlawful actions;

3. Compensation for any and all other damages suffered as a consequence of

Defendants’ unlawful actions;

4. Compensatory damages for Defendants’ violations of the KCRA and Title VII;

5. Punitive damages for Defendants’ violation of Title VII;

6. Costs and attorney’s fees incurred as a result of bringing this action;

7. Pre- and post-judgement interest on all sums recoverable; and

8. All other legal and/or equitable relief this Court sees fit to grant.

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Respectfully submitted,

BIESECKER DUTKANYCH & MACER, LLC

By: /s/ Andrew Dutkanych
Andrew Dutkanych
101 North Seventh Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202
Telephone: (502) 561-3418
Facsimile: (812) 424-1005
Email: ad@bdlegal.com

By: /s/ Krista A. Willike
Krista A. Willike
101 North Seventh Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202
Telephone: (502) 561-3443
Facsimile: (502) 561-3444
Email: kwillike@bdlegal.com
Counsel for Plaintiff

DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL

Plaintiff, William Armstrong, by counsel, requests a trial by jury on all issues deemed so

triable.

Respectfully submitted,

BIESECKER DUTKANYCH & MACER, LLC

By: /s/ Andrew Dutkanych
Andrew Dutkanych
101 North Seventh Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202
Telephone: (502) 561-3418
Facsimile: (812) 424-1005
Email: ad@bdlegal.com

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By: /s/ Krista A. Willike
Krista A. Willike
101 North Seventh Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202
Telephone: (502) 561-344
Facsimile:(502) 561-3444
Email: kwillik@bdlegal.com
Counsel for Plaintiff

Dated: 4/26/17.

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