Glenwood Springs woman’s lawsuit sent back to state court |

Glenwood Springs woman’s lawsuit sent back to state court

Phillip Yates
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” A federal judge has sent back to state court a lawsuit filed by the daughter of a Garfield County commissioner against the Garfield County Board of Commissioners, the sheriff and the county’s jail commander.

U.S. District Judge Edward Nottingham, in mid-July, dismissed the Garfield County commissioners from a lawsuit filed by Lisa Martin, the daughter of Commissioner John Martin. He also dismissed several claims that were a part of her lawsuit “with prejudice,” and remanded the remaining claims to Garfield County District Court.

Lisa Martin’s complaint named the Garfield County Board of Commissioners, Sheriff Lou Vallario and Jail Commander Scott Dawson as defendants.

Nottingham issued his order, which was handed down on July 18, after attorneys for Martin, the commissioners, Vallario and Dawson filed a motion that sought those specific actions.

A statement released by the sheriff’s office in response to Nottingham’s order said that not “only have we prevailed in this case so far, but that the remainder of the frivolous complaints will be eventually dismissed and we will be exonerated in totality.”

“Anyone with knowledge of county government knows that the sheriff is not an employee of the (Board of County Commissioners), but a separate elected official,” the sheriff’s office statement said. “Therefore Judge Nottingham correctly dismissed, with prejudice, all complaints against the Board of County Commissioners since the BOCC has no standing in these complaints.”

The statement also said Martin’s attorney, Richard Dally, failed to follow federal law that required Martin to attempt to resolve complaints with the Equal Opportunity Commission.

Lisa Martin worked at the Garfield County Jail as an inmate services technician from July 2003 to May 2007. Her lawsuit alleged that male supervisors, including Dawson, had subjected her to unwanted and inappropriate on-the-job and off-the-job scrutiny regarding her personal life.

The lawsuit further alleged that they circulated gossip and rumors about an alleged intimate relationship Martin had with a male supervisor and that Vallario and Dawson asked Martin to falsify reports, budget documents and employment documents for the sheriff’s office.

Attempts to reach Martin’s lawyer were not immediately successful late Tuesday.

Contact Phillip Yates: 384-9117

Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

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