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LAW SUMMARY

U.S. Judge Enforces EEOC Order to PJAX Maryland’s U.S. District Chief Judge J. Frederick Motz has ordered PJAX Inc. to comply with an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission subpoena issued in the course of its investigation of the firm’s alleged unlawful hiring practices. However, rather than ordering the privately owned, non-union trucking company based in Gibsonia, Pa., to turn over every document the EEOC had demanded from all 13 terminals it operates in six states including Maryland, EEOC lawyer Debra M. Lawrence said the judge has opted to enforce the subpoena “piecemeal.” She said Motz ordered the company to provide EEOC investigators with the documentation they require from PJAX’s Baltimore facility, as well as from two other terminals yet to be determined. Lawrence said the judge told the parties he thought it preferable to proceed this way in order that working together they may discover a “synergy” which would minimize the necessity and expense of litigation. The enforcement action, filed in September, accuses firm of stonewalling the agency’s investigation of potential violations of Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The action includes charges that the company would not consider hiring women as truck drivers, and that it considered applicants over the age of 50 “too old” to drive trucks or work on the docks.


Man Alleges Beating at Wal-MartWal-Mart Stores Inc. and an inmate employed at its store on National Pike are being sued by a man who claims the inmate beat him with a shovel. David P. Fadrowski of Halethorpe filed suit last week against the retailer and employee Clarence Edward Ridgley. In his complaint, filed in Baltimore County Circuit Court, Fadorwski alleges that on Nov. 24, 1999 he was in the Wal-Mart parking lot in the 6000 block of National Pike when Ridgley approached “from behind and violently and intentionally hit him in the head, neck, back, arms and hands with a shovel causing serious and painful injuries to Plaintiff.” Ridgley’s address, according to the complaint, is the Metropolitan Transition Center of the State Department of Corrections. DOC personnel confirmed that Ridgley is an inmate but declined to comment on his background or make him available for a telephone interview. Wal-Mart spokesman William C. Wertz said that records “indicate there was a dispute … and the police were called, but there were no charges filed by either party against the other.” Wertz said that Wal-Mart doesn’t have a program for hiring inmates.


Abbreviation Lands Pharmacist in SuitA Baltimore County couple have sued Giant Food Inc. and Giant pharmacist Richard D. Tarr for $1 million on allegations that Tarr wrote instructions to give their 6-year-old daughter triple the prescribed dosage of the “sedative and hypnotic” medication chloral hydrate. According to the compliant filed last week in Baltimore County Circuit Court, Lauren Hide’s dentist wrote the prescription for the sedative to ease the little girl’s terror before appointments. However, the dentist’s prescription to take 6 “tsp.,” or teaspoons, an hour before the dental appointment was translated as 6 tablespoons on the label instructions. Lauren’s mother, Mary Hide, administered the medication at 9:30 a.m. before a November, 1997 appointment. Lauren allegedly slept through the dental procedure and, at 3:15 p.m., Mary Hide took the unconscious child to St. Joseph Hospital’s Emergency Room, where she stayed overnight while doctors administered activated charcoal through a tube into her stomach. She awoke the next morning, according to the complaint, but suffers “anxieties related to taking liquid medicines, fear of entering hospitals, separation anxiety, nightmares … fear of entering hospitals; separation anxiety; nightmares, panic attacks; refusal to sleep alone,” among other things.