Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Mackris v. O'Reilly - A Sexual Harassment Complaint

Bill O'Reilly and his employers are now charged with sexual harassment in a complaint filed in New York state court. O'Reilly in fact sued first, after a breakdown in settlement negotiations. You can check out the story in today's Washington Post and you can see a copy of the complaint posted at the Smoking Gun. Caution, XXX rated with apparently verbatim quotes from what one would assume are tape recordings of conversations between the two.

What is strange about the complaint based on an admittedly quick skim is that there is no indication the plaintiff has complied with any of the procedural requirements that are normally required before bringing such a suit. Maybe that's an oversight in the drafting, or I missed it in my quick skim, or maybe New York state law doesn't require it. But assuming, none of those is true, then all one can speculate is that we are in for a long and salacious story line.

In fact, regardless if any of those are true I think we are in line for just exactly that. Even at this juncture, I think I can safely predict this will not be a good thing for the plaintiff, for O'Reilly, either of their families and friends, O'Reilly's employers, the courts, the legal profession, or the important cause of ending sexual harassment in the workplace.

An update. For background on Mackris' counsel, Benedict Morelli, check out this story from the New York magazine website.

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