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Fagg v. Holder

United States District Court, Eighth Circuit

October 10, 2013

MARTHA A. FAGG, Plaintiff,
v.
ERIC H. HOLDER, JR., ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES, Defendant.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

RICHARD G. KOPF, Senior District Judge.

Stephanie Rose, then 36 years of age, was sworn in as the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Iowa on November 24, 2009. In February 2010, plaintiff Assistant United States Attorney Martha Fagg received a "successful" rating on her performance review for 2009, and the review was signed and dated by Rose. One month later, in March 2010, Fagg, then 53 years of age, wrote a memorandum to Rose expressing concerns about Rose's replacement of the office's Civil Chief (who was 60 years old) with 35-year-old Teresa Baumann and statements Rose had allegedly made about office retirements and a "succession plan." Fagg's memorandum stated that Rose's actions and statements "could be construed as discriminatory, " "could be a prima facie case of both direct and indirect age discrimination, " and "may be construed to be hostile to individuals in this office over the age of 40 and beyond." (Filing 56-4 at CM/ECF p. 43.)

The evidence indicates that soon after sending this memorandum to Rose, Fagg experienced a heightened level of scrutiny of her work, surveillance, an audit of her past case files, a letter of reprimand, proposed suspensions, leave restriction notices, a temporary and proposed permanent transfer to another office approximately 250 miles away from her home, and ultimately termination from her 13-year employment. During this time frame, Fagg experienced health problems necessitating hospitalization, anxiety and blood-pressure medication, therapy sessions, and a driving restriction.

Fagg filed this action in March 2012, alleging two causes of action. First, Fagg claims that the defendant violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA")[1] by terminating her employment because of her age and retaliating against her for engaging in conduct protected by the ADEA. Second, Fagg claims that the defendant violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, [2] and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973[3] because the actions taken against her did not reasonably accommodate her known mental and physical impairments.

The defendant has filed a motion for summary judgment (Filing 49), and the parties have filed the following evidence in support of, and in opposition to, the motion:

DEFENDANT'S APPENDIX IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT (Filing 49-2 to 49-9)
Exhibit 1 Complaint
Exhibit 2 Answer
Exhibit 3 Forms SF50s for Martha Fagg
Exhibit 4 Germaine excerpts of the deposition transcript of Martha Fagg
Exhibit 5 Germaine excerpts of the deposition of transcript Teresa Baumann
Exhibit 6 Germaine excerpts of the deposition of transcript Stephanie Rose
Exhibit 7 Germaine excerpts of the Sworn EEO statement of Stephanie Rose
Exhibit 8 Intra-office e-mails and memoranda
Exhibit 9 Germaine excerpts of the deposition transcript of Larry Kudej
Exhibit 10 2010 Organization Chart for the Northern Iowa U.S. Attorneys Office
Exhibit 11 Germaine excerpts of answers to Fagg's interrogatories (redacted)
Exhibit 12 Germaine excerpts of the Foundations of Leadership Documents
Exhibit 13 Germaine excerpts of the deposition transcript of Michelle Schwebach
Exhibit 14 Germaine excerpts of the deposition transcript of Kevin Fletcher
Exhibit 15 Summary of pre-2004 attendance and conduct complaints against Martha Fagg
Exhibit 16 Germaine excerpts of the deposition transcript of Tim Duax
Exhibit 17 Fagg's responses to the First Set of Requests to Admit
Exhibit 18 Letter of Reprimand
Exhibit 19 Germaine excerpts of the Larry Kudej's 2010 ...

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