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United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, Tallahassee Division
November 21, 2016, Decided; November 21, 2016, Filed
CASE NO. 4:16cv100-RH/CAS
ORDER GRANTING SUMMARY JUDGMENT
This is a disability-discrimination case. After the plaintiff employee exhibited bizarre behaviors at work, the defendant employer required him to undergo a fitness-for-duty evaluation. An independent psychologist concluded the plaintiff was unfit for duty. The defendant placed the plaintiff on leave pending the plaintiff's submission of medical documentation showing he was fit for duty. The plaintiff did not provide any such documentation despite repeated requests. After about five months, the defendant terminated the plaintiff's employment.
The plaintiff asserts this violated the Americans with Disabilities Act and its state-law counterpart. The defendant has moved for summary judgment. This order grants the motion.
On a summary-judgment motion, disputes in the evidence must be resolved, and all reasonable inferences from the evidence must be drawn, in favor [*2] of the nonmoving party. The moving party must show that, when the facts are so viewed, the moving party "is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(a); see also Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322, 106 S. Ct. 2548, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265 (1986). A summary-judgment motion cannot be used to resolve in the moving party's favor a "genuine dispute as to any material fact." Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(a).
The plaintiff Donald Lee Morgan began working for the defendant City of Tallahassee in 2008 as a mechanic in the City's fleet-management division. In late 2013, Mr. Morgan began behaving oddly. He talked at excessive length with other mechanics, interfering with their ability to do their jobs. Worse, Mr. Morgan told fantastic, untrue, and humiliating stories—stories detached from reality—about a new division supervisor. This caused the supervisor considerable discomfort. At about the same time, Mr. Morgan's wife filed for divorce and obtained a domestic-violence injunction against him. Mr. Morgan failed to report the injunction as required by City policy.
Three oral counselings, a written reprimand, and a referral to the City's employee assistance program did not solve the problems. In April 2014, the City referred Mr. Morgan to an independent psychologist, Dr. Carolyn Stimel, for a fitness-for-duty [*3] evaluation. Dr. Stimel concluded that Mr. Morgan's "verbal and interpersonal behaviors" were a "major problem" and that he might have "become destabilized by his divorce." ECF No. 18-1 at 2-3. Dr. Stimel concluded that Mr. Morgan was not fit for duty.
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2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 161127 *; 2016 WL 6916814
DONALD LEE MORGAN, Plaintiff, v. CITY OF TALLAHASSEE, Defendant.
accommodation, essential function, documentation, termination, disability, fitness-for-duty, asserts