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JD, University of San Diego School of Law
BS, Rutgers University
Deputy Sheriff v. Sheriff’s Department (2017) – Deputy Sheriff was terminated based on findings that he did not have the authorization to order and purchase firearms on behalf of certain deputies, utilize the Department logo to create firearm purchase forms and made false statements during the criminal and internal affairs investigations. The Deputy claimed it was reasonable for him to fill out the sham purchase forms for the deputies since they expressed interest or affirmatively told him they wanted to order the guns. The Civil Service Commission and eventually the trial court rejected the former Deputy’s arguments and upheld the termination.
Employee v. Water District (2017) – The Hearing Officer found that the District’s discipline was appropriate in light of the credible evidence presented by the District at the hearing regarding the supervisor’s repeated and intolerable outbursts with other employees, and further found the employee’s testimony was not credible. The Board eventually upheld the suspension.
Deputy Sheriff v. Sheriff’s Department (2015) – Successfully prosecuted the termination of a deputy sheriff who engaged in off-duty conduct with a civilian that violated the Department’s Rules of Professional Conduct and several Department Policies. The former deputy claimed that he was acting in self-defense when he pulled a gun on a civilian. The Deputy Civil Service Commission rejected the former Deputy’s arguments and upheld the termination.
Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs, et al. v. County of Los Angeles (2018) – A Sergeant employed by the Los Angeles County Sherriff’s Department worked as a correctional officer. After a Department administrative investigation into an inmates complaint, and subsequent criminal investigation, the District Attorney’s Office brought criminal misdemeanor charges against the Sergeant alleging cruel punishment or impairing the health of an inmate. The Department issued the Sergeant notice of its intent to suspend him without pay (consistent with applicable civil service rules), and notified him of his right to respond to the charges. The Department ultimately imposed the suspension and notified the Sergeant of its decision and his right to request a post-suspension hearing to challenge the decision. The Sergeant requested and was granted a hearing, but requested that the hearing be held in abeyance until the conclusion of the criminal case.
The Sergeant then filed a petition in state court claiming that the Department violated his due process rights when it failed to provide him with an evidentiary hearing prior to suspending him. The Department asserted that its pre-suspension Skelly meeting provided the Sergeant with sufficient process and he was not entitled to an evidentiary hearing prior to being suspended. The trial and appellate courts agreed with the Department.
Heath v. City of Desert Hot Springs, et al (2013) – Plaintiff, a police officer, brought suit to recover for alleged retaliation arising from her reporting of alleged excessive use of force by fellow police officers. The United States Central District Court granted defendants’ motion to dismiss in its entirety, with prejudice as to the first two claims – the 42 U.S.C. § 1983/First Amendment free speech claims – and without prejudice as to five remaining state court claims.
Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs, et al. v. County of Los Angeles, et al. (2012) – Handled a Fair Labor Standards Act collective/class action case where the U.S. District Court granted a County law enforcement employer’s summary judgment motion. The lawsuit involved the “donning and doffing” claims of approximately 3,000 deputy sheriffs in two different, yet consolidated, collective action lawsuits filed against the County and its Sheriff (collectively “the County”). The district court also granted the County’s motion to decertify the remaining “off-the-clock” work claims. The district court’s rulings effectively ended two large collective/class action lawsuits after several years of litigation.
On April 30, 2018, the California Supreme Court issued a landmark decision in the matter of Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles (2018) 4 Cal.5th 903. The California Supreme Court reinterpreted and significantly altered the test for determining whether workers in...
The United Stated Department of Labor has issued a final rule updating its regulations regarding joint employer status under the FLSA. This bulletin will discuss the final rule and how it could affect whether an employee who works for you could be considered an employee who works for joint...
Partner Elizabeth Tom Arce and Associate Jennifer Palagi authored the Daily Journal article, “FFCRA Forces Public Agencies to Comply with FLSA ‘Regular Rate of Pay’ Calculations,” discussing how the Families First Coronavirus Act requires employers to evaluate how they calculate the...
Partner Elizabeth Tom Arce and Associate Jennifer Palagi authored the Law360 article, “Virus Leave Poses Pay Calculation Issues For Public Agencies,” discussing how public agencies can properly calculate rate of pay under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Read the...