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WILLIAMS v. RUNYON

April 4, 1995

RICHARD WILLIAMS, Plaintiff,
v.
MARVIN T. RUNYON, Postmaster General, Defendant.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: CHARLES RONALD NORGLE, SR.

CHARLES R. NORGLE, SR., District Judge:

 This matter having been tried before the court between February 3 and February 10, 1995, and after hearing the evidence and arguments at trial, the court enters the following findings of fact and conclusions of law pursuant to Rule 52 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. For reasons set forth below, judgment is entered in favor of Defendant and against Plaintiff as to all counts of the Complaint.

 FINDINGS OF FACT

 1. The court conducted a bench trial on all counts of Plaintiff's Complaint.

 2. Plaintiff's Complaint contains allegations of sexual harassment, sex discrimination, age discrimination, and unlawful termination as reprisal for filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") in violation of Title VII and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA").

 3. Plaintiff brought this suit against the Defendant Marvin T. Runyon, Postmaster General of the United States Postal Service ("Defendant Postal Service").

 4. Plaintiff Richard Williams ("Williams") is an African-American male. He is forty years of age.

 5. Plaintiff is a citizen of the United States and a resident of the City of Chicago, Cook County, Illinois.

 6. Plaintiff began employment with the Postal Service on May 6, 1958, and remained a Postal Service employee until his termination on June 24, 1987. Plaintiff had several breaks in service during employment with the Postal Service.

 7. Williams' suit is based on the following grounds: (1) that Clora Grant ("Grant") *fn1" had sexually harassed him for approximately two years prior to his termination; and (2) that the events which the Postal Service claims gave rise to his termination were simply a pretext for terminating him due to his age, sex, and his filing of complaints with the EEOC.

 8. Grant, the afternoon supervisor, cam near Williams two or three times a day. She did this as Williams sorted the mail in his cubicle--his cubicle, located in a busy area, was one of a number of cubicles in a row where other sorted the mail. Each time Grant came near Williams, she would stand close enough that Williams could feel her breath on his face. Grant also stood close enough that her hips and thighs would touch Williams' body. The uninvited touching of hips and thighs occurred several times over a period of time.

 9. On three separate occasions, Grant asked Williams if he could come over to her apartment to fix an electrical appliance and an electrical outlet, and for a "good old country girl's meal."

 10. Williams declined the invitations on each occasion.

 11. Grant also touched Williams on several occasions. On one occasion, Grant reached into Williams' shirt pocket and pinched his nipple while purportedly looking for cigarettes. On another occasion, Grant reached into the front pocket of Williams' pants.

 12. Williams repeatedly spurned Grant's advances.

 13. Grant began to criticize Williams and placed "test letters" on his route more frequently than with other employees.

 14. Williams made several complaints with Lee Baker ("Baker"), the morning supervisor, Sadie Boles ("Boles"), the Station Superintendent for the Pilsen Station, and O.V. Washington ("Washington"), another postal supervisor.

 15. Williams' wife also complained of the alleged harassment to Washington about Grant's activities. She learned of these allegations from her spouse.

 16. Defendant Postal Service disregarded the complaints and made no attempts to remedy the situation or to counsel Grant on the effects of her actions.

 17. As a result of the Grant's alleged actions, Williams developed stomach pains and insomnia.

 18. On August 20, 1986, fourteen Postal Service employees were killed and others wounded by a fellow Postal Service employee in Edmond, Oklahoma. This incident was widely publicized within the Postal Service and by the American media.

 19. On the morning of Saturday, August 23, 1986, three days after the murders in Oklahoma, Baker, a morning supervisor, criticized Williams for being absent from his work station for thirty minutes.

 20. Williams denied he had been gone for thirty minutes. Williams claimed he was in the bathroom no longer than ten minutes and argued that the unusual weight of his mail bag caused the extra twenty minute delay. Williams disputed the allegations, although based upon the personal observations of Baker.

 21. Due to the extended absence from his work station and the resultant insubordination, Baker planned to take disciplinary action against Williams.

 22. Upon returning from his delivery route, Williams confronted Grant and asked her about ...


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