By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal
ABERDEEN – A federal jury this week awarded $100,000 damages to a former West Point employee in a race discrimination trial.
Shasta Plunkett sued West Point after being fired from his job as interim superintendent of the city electric department.
The white man claimed he was fired because of his race and because he filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Tupelo attorneys Rachel Pierce Waide and Jim Waide represented Plunkett. West Point’s attorneys were Lawson Hester and Michelle High.
U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock presided over the five-day trial.
From the jury’s verdict form, they said that race was a factor in Plunkett’s firing and that he had proved his termination was not for legitimate reasons.
The award was $5,000 for lost salary, which includes back pay, and $95,000 compensation for emotional pain and suffering.
Jim Waide said their deliberations lasted six hours.