The Union staff

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March 14, 2013
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Nevada County Superior Court appeals Gallup verdict

County court files appeal in Gallup case

The Nevada County Superior Court has filed an appeal of a jury verdict in a case involving former Family Court mediator Emily Gallup.

In October 2012, a Sacramento County jury found in Gallup’s favor in all aspects of her whistle-blowing lawsuit, awarding her $313,206 in damages. Gallup was represented by M. Catherine Jones and George Allen.

The jury was asked to determine whether Gallup was fired in retaliation for whistle-blowing, or because of a pattern of undermining her supervisor that culminated in an act of egregious misconduct — taking pages of notes from her supervisor’s diary that contained confidential case information.

Gallup’s suit against Nevada County Superior Court alleged she was wrongfully terminated after blowing the whistle on the court’s failure to follow state laws.

The jury found that Gallup had reasonable cause to believe there had been a violation of a state statute or regulation and that she had disclosed that belief to her supervisors.

They also found that her attempts to disclose that belief had resulted in an adverse action — being fired — and that retaliation was the motive for her firing. They agreed the court did not have a valid reason to terminate her and that she was caused substantial harm because of being fired.

Nevada County Superior Court Executive Officer Sean Metroka said he was notified of the decision to file an appeal Wednesday, adding that the court is being represented by attorneys from the Administrative Office of the Courts.

“It sickens me that Nevada County Superior Court is continuing to fight for the right to flout the law,” said Gallup in a prepared statement. “They are using taxpayer dollars to battle a case they’ve already lost twice.”

Information as to what grounds there might be for an appeal was not available as of press time.

— Liz Kellar

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The Union Updated Mar 15, 2013 10:09AM Published Mar 14, 2013 09:48PM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.