WPC loses wrongful dismissal case » EntornoInteligente

WPC loses wrongful dismissal case

Entornointeligente.com / A 48-year-old po­lice­woman from To­ba­go has lost her law­suit over be­ing wrong­ful­ly dis­missed af­ter she in­jured her an­kle in a work­place ac­ci­dent al­most eight years ago.

De­liv­er­ing a de­ci­sion, yes­ter­day, High Court Judge Frank Seep­er­sad up­held an ap­pli­ca­tion from the Of­fice of the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al to strike out Cpl Karen Wilt­shire-James’ wrong­ful dis­missal law­suit against the State.

Seep­er­sad not­ed that Wilt­shire-James’ case was an abuse of process as she has a sep­a­rate pend­ing law­suit seek­ing over $500,000 in com­pen­sa­tion for her in­jury.

He said that her le­gal is­sues could ad­e­quate­ly be dealt with in that case with­out the need for the oth­er be­fore him.

Seep­er­sad said: “The Court is sym­pa­thet­ic to the Claimant’s is­sues of rep­re­sen­ta­tion how­ev­er those cir­cum­stances can­not be used to cir­cum­vent the clear abuse of process which aris­es in this mat­ter.”

“Ul­ti­mate­ly, the Claimant can­not and ought not to be al­lowed sev­er­al bites at the same cher­ry,” he added.

Based on his rul­ing, Seep­er­sad or­dered Wilshire-James to pay the State’s le­gal costs for de­fend­ing the sec­ond law­suit be­fore him.

In the orig­i­nal law­suit, filed in No­vem­ber 2017, Wilt­shire-James is claim­ing that the T&T Po­lice Ser­vice (TTPS) was neg­li­gent in fail­ing to pro­vide a safe work­ing en­vi­ron­ment at the Scar­bor­ough Po­lice Sta­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to the ev­i­dence in the case, Wilt­shire-James was walk­ing in a cor­ri­dor at the sta­tion on De­cem­ber 10, 2013, when a rim and tyre, which was be­ing stored as ev­i­dence in an on­go­ing case, fell on her foot.

While the po­lice pros­e­cu­tor ini­tial­ly ig­nored the in­jury, she was forced to go to hos­pi­tal the fol­low­ing day af­ter she was un­able to walk or stand for ex­tend­ed pe­ri­ods.

She was giv­en sev­er­al weeks of sick leave, which was ex­tend­ed af­ter she at­tempt­ed to re­turn to work and con­tin­ued to suf­fer pain and dis­com­fort.

She claimed that she was then placed on ex­tend­ed sick leave with­out pay and her back pay for salary ne­go­ti­a­tions be­tween 2011 and 2013 was with­held.

In re­sponse, the TTPS con­tend­ed that Wilt­shire-James fab­ri­cat­ed her in­juries.

Ac­cord­ing to its de­fence to the law­suit, the TTPS is claim­ing that two se­nior of­fi­cers walked through the cor­ri­dor be­fore her and did not see or hear when the al­leged ac­ci­dent took place. It is al­so con­tend­ing that, if it did oc­cur, it was due to Wilt­shire-James’ neg­li­gence.

It al­so claimed that the TTPS’s hu­man re­source de­part­ment de­cid­ed to freeze her salary and refuse to place her on in­jury leave as its in­ter­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tions showed that her al­le­ga­tions were false.

In the law­suit be­fore Seep­er­sad, Wilt­shire-James claimed that she was al­so by­passed for pro­mo­tion as she was placed on the mer­it list but was not pro­mot­ed along­side her col­leagues that had placed low­er than her.

She claimed that she learned that her pro­mo­tion was af­fect­ed by is­sues with her in­jury.

She was rep­re­sent­ed by St Clair Michael O’Neil, Na­dia Scott and Jash­min Sandy, while Ke­l­isha Bel­lo and Nisa Sim­mons rep­re­sent­ed the State.

LINK ORIGINAL: The Trinidad Guardian

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