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September 2012

Chicago Employment Team Wins Summary Judgment

On Friday, August 31, 2012, a team from the Gordon & Rees Chicago office led by Hayes Ryan and Tom Cronin obtained summary judgment on behalf of a large beer and wine distributor in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois.

Plaintiff, a former employee of the distributor, filed suit against Defendants alleging false imprisonment, defamation per se, and malicious prosecution stemming from his termination for allegedly stealing a case of alcohol.  Although Plaintiff later voluntarily dismissed his false imprisonment and defamation counts, he pursued his malicious prosecution counts against Defendants and made a settlement demand that exceeded $2 million.

In the motion for summary judgment, we provided the court with an overwhelming amount of support--including eyewitness testimony, photographs, time records, and surveillance video--establishing that Defendants had sufficient probable cause to both terminate Plaintiff's employment and prosecute him for employee theft.  Defendants also focused the court's attention on Plaintiff's own credibility, where he admitted in his verified complaint that he was the individual portrayed in the surveillance video but later denied that it was him during his deposition.

Thomas G. Cronin
J. Hayes Ryan