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Hamlin v. SMG Holdings Inc.

United States District Court, N.D. Oklahoma

March 24, 2017

MALLORIE HAMLIN, an individual, Plaintiff,
v.
SMG HOLDINGS, INC., Defendant.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          TERENCE KERN United States District Judge.

         Before the Court is Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment (Doc. 30), wherein Defendant moves for summary judgment on Plaintiff's two remaining claims: (1) Title VII sexually hostile work environment; and (2) negligent supervision under Oklahoma law.[1]

         I. Factual Background

         Plaintiff Mallorie Hamlin is a twenty-four year old female classified as mentally retarded. She receives Social Security disability checks payable to her mother on a monthly basis based on this condition. Plaintiff needs assistance in remembering to bathe, wear clean clothes, and take care of herself. At relevant times, she has resided with her mother or grandmother, who drive her to her place of employment. Plaintiff has difficulty recalling when things occurred and placing events in chronological order. At the time of relevant events, Plaintiff was not taking any medication.[2]

         In July of 2012, when she was approximately 20 years old, Plaintiff was hired by Defendant SMG Holdings, Inc. to work part time as an Environmental Services Attendant (“ESA”) at the BOK Center. An ESA's duties include cleaning and disposing of waste in a designated area. A “job coach” from a vocational rehabilitation service helped Plaintiff obtain the interview and attended the interview with her. Plaintiff's work schedule is sporadic and based on the number of events held at the BOK Center. Plaintiff worked the following total amount of hours during the past four years: (1) 2013 - 435.25; (2) 2014 - 477.46; (3) 2015 - 444.47; and (4) 2016 - 375.05. Plaintiff has been continuously employed as an ESA since she was hired in 2012.

         Plaintiff's direct supervisor, David Welch (“Welch”), his supervisor, Angela Shelton (“Shelton”), and Defendant's Human Resources Manager, Allen Curd (“Curd”), have been aware Plaintiff suffered from some type of disability since the outset of her employment. Specifically, Shelton was aware that Plaintiff was not at an age-appropriate developmental stage and that Plaintiff had difficulty comprehending instructions and communicating her thoughts. When Plaintiff was hired, Shelton and Curd discussed that Plaintiff may need “extra help” and that she should be kept away from the public during events. As another example of Plaintiff receiving “extra help, ” Welch wrote down Plaintiff's schedule for her and helped ensure her mother or grandmother received it.

         Plaintiff claims that, in November or December of 2013, a co-worker named Kevin Williams (“Williams”) raped her on two different occasions while they were at work. Williams is a part-time employee in “operations” and works during BOK events. The first alleged rape occurred in a laundry room behind a washer and dryer (“laundry incident”), and the second occurred in a catering area (“catering incident”) (collectively “2013 incidents”). Plaintiff testified that she told Welch about the laundry incident immediately after it occurred:

Q. After the first time in the laundry room, did you tell anybody what had happened?
A. Told David.
Q. Do you remember what you told David?
A. Yeah. I told him, I said, Dave, can I go home. That's all I said because Kevin was bothering me, so he let me go home and come back after that.
Q. So you didn't tell Dave that Kevin Williams had just had sex with you in the laundry room?
A. Yes. Yes, I told him that.
Q. You did tell him that?
A. Yes.
Q. Okay. Do you remember when you told ...

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