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Monday, March 21, 2016

Obama nominee Abdul Kallon once defended company where women were called "cunts," "bitches," and "whores"--and marketing staff was the "whore's den"


Abdul Kallon
(From al.com)
The fate of Obama Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland remains up in the air. But the fate of another Obama nominee--Abdul Kallon for a seat on the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals--should be sealed. Kallon should be soundly rejected, especially by liberals who tend to care about the civil rights of minorities. Research into Kallon's past shows that he considers the rights of minorities to be ripe for trampling.

How is this for irony? America's first black president and Alabama's only black member of Congress have trumpeted Kallon's nomination. Neither President Barack Obama nor U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL) apparently are aware that Kallon spent much of his law career working against the interests of black people.

On top of that, Kallon has worked against the interests of women. Black Americans and women are supposed to be major constituencies of the Democratic Party. But Obama and Sewell support the elevation of an individual who has worked to ensure employers can get away with discriminating against blacks, women, and other minorities?

Unreal.

Want proof of Kallon's tendency to trample the rights of women? Look no further than McCormack, et al v. Campus Crest Group, et al. (WD of NC, 2011), a case involving allegations that Charlotte-based Campus Crest Communities and then CEO Ted Rollins engaged in vile discrimination and harassment against blacks and women.

Regular readers will recognize the name Ted Rollins. He has appeared frequently here at Legal Schnauzer because of his central role in a divorce case that caused his ex wife, Sherry Carroll Rollins, and two children to wind up on food stamps in Birmingham. The chief corporate law firm for Rollins and Campus Crest was Bradley Arant, of Birmingham. Before Obama nominated him as a U.S. district judge, Kallon worked at Bradley Arant and was actively engaged in defending Campus Crest against allegations in the McCormack case.

What was it like for women to work at Campus Crest? Consider this from an earlier post about McCormack:

Campus Crest Communities, which develops student housing near college campuses, is charged in Charlotte federal court with creating a work environment that is hostile to women and African-Americans. Two plaintiffs in the lawsuits, Nicole McAuliffe and Heather McCormack, say they were terminated after complaining of a sexually hostile work environment at Campus Crest. A third plaintiff, Tammy Hughes-Brown, says she has faced discrimination because she is an African-American. . . .

Nicole McAuliffe was hired as an area manager at Campus Crest's Charlotte headquarters in October 2008. She was paid a salary of $82,500, with a bonus potential of $50,000. But she quickly discovered that the workplace was hostile and demeaning toward women, driven largely by Chief Operating Officer Brian Sharpe. McAuliffe's complaint states:

"Sharpe, on a frequent and/or daily basis, used the term “fuck” and “fucking,” in his verbal communications in the workplace. Sharpe further referred to women in the office as “cunts,” “bitches” and “whores” and referred to Defendant’s marketing team as the “whore’s den.” On more than one occasion, Sharpe, in the presence of Plaintiff and others, referred to Shannon King as a “cunt.” On another occasion, while on the corporate jet with Sharpe and others, Sharpe made derogatory and misogynistic remarks about Heather McCormack, Defendant’s Vice-President of Administrative Operations, calling her a “fucking bitch” and threatening to “rip her fucking head off.”

This language did not come from a low-level supervisor. It came from the company's COO. Here is more about the threatening and demeaning language women were subjected to at Campus Crest:

Shannon King, who had been executive vice president and chief marketing officer, resigned from Campus Crest in October. McAuliffe's complaint provides insight into why King and other women might have been uncomfortable at Campus Crest:

"Also, Sharpe, in Plaintiff’s presence, complained about a race discrimination complaint made by another female employee of Defendant and stated he “couldn’t believe she had fucking done this [made a complaint]” and that “if our employees don’t want to work,  they should fucking get out.” On yet another occasion, Plaintiff heard Sharpe shout sex-based obscenities at McCormack and observed that Sharpe had become so angry and agitated that he popped a blood vessel in his eye."

 According to the complaint, Rollins and Chief Investment Officer Mike Hartnett tolerated Sharpe's behavior. In some instances, Rollins contributed to the hostile work environment:

"Further, Plaintiff heard Ted Rollins frequently yell at Heather McCormack to “go get the fucking money.” On yet other occasions, Rollins insisted that all attractive female applicants for employment be introduced to Brian Sharpe; alternatively, if Rollins saw an attractive applicant for employment in the office, he would bring Sharpe in to meet her."

Did Abdul Kallon stand up to such racism, sexism, and bullying? Nope. He tried to protect the bullies, to make sure the victims would get as little justice as possible.

Barack Obama and Terri Sewell want the public to believe that such a man is fit to sit on a federal appellate bench where civil-rights cases frequently land? Who are they trying to kid?

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

So Judge Fallon is the Antichrist because he worked at the firm that handled a case you don't like?

Anonymous said...

Finally...real substantive news and a break from that AM crap. Now---here's the issue I have with this story. Abdul had a job with a law firm. That law firm was getting paid to defend Campus Crest. He was doing his job.

Do you think that public defenders like to defend people accused of murder, rape, etc? Of course not...but they're doing their job much like Abdul was here. Just because you don't like the ethics of the person you're defending doesn't mean you can walk away from a long time client paying lots of money to defend them.

He seemed to do his job quite well...in spite of the repugnant nature occurring at the jobsite (which I agree was horrible).

legalschnauzer said...

You think, @11:36, that it's appropriate for women in the workplace to be called "cunts," "bitches," and "whores"? And you think it's fine to defend such behavior? Is that what you are about?

I will be the first to say that Campus Crest Communities was entitled to defense on these charges, and lawyers defend slimy individuals and entities all the time.

But most lawyers aren't being nominated to a federal judgeship where almost all civil-rights cases are heard. That makes Kallon's engagement in this case--defending alleged sexual harassment of a gross nature--relevant.

In my view, the public should know about this. The Obama admin, and Kallon's supporters, are sending the message that, because Kallon is black, he automatically stands up against oppression of minorities. The record shows that is not necessarily the case.

It has nothing to do with whether Kallon is the "Antichrist" or whether I "like the case." Of course, I understand your mind probably isn't capable of expressing itself above a third-grade level.

legalschnauzer said...

You and I pretty much are on the same page, @11:47. See my comment above.

Anonymous said...

I disagree about Kallon's responsibility here. Yes, once he was at Bradley Arant, Kallon was due to defend Campus Crest when assigned to the case.

But Kallon had every reason to know, before joining up, the kind of law that Bradley Arant practices. It is a pro-corporate, right-wing firm that defends employees who discriminate. Kallon didn't have to accept a position at that firm. If he really had convictions, he could have joined a firm that fought for the rights of regular people.

I don't have a problem with Kallon's work on the Campus Crest case. But I do have a problem with him taking a job at Bradley Arant. And I have a major problem with Obama appointing, and now trying to promote, a lawyer from Bradley Arant.

K said...

People and firms deserve competent defense in both civil and criminal cases. Period.

Sexual assault. Genocide. Murder. Lynching. War crimes. Stalking. Defamation. It doesn't matter. Ever hear about Robert Servatius? Even you, Mr Shuler, deserve a competent defense when you clearly defame others. I would be the first to argue for this.

And I for one would not assume that the lawyer who defended you, Mr Shuler, when you defamed Garrison and others is automatically disqualified from the bench, simply because he defended a "cyber stalker."

Maybe the "public should know about" the people that have helped and defended you? Doesn't make sense to me at all, but you seem to be promoting it.

Ellis Darby said...

We've all seen it "ripped from the headlines" and played out in TV drama:

Minority and/or female harassment victim brings suit and defendant's counsel assigns a minority/female associate as the lead defender.

How much distance must said defender put between that defense-for-profit and a Federal judgeship?
My heart tells me said defender is disqualified for life.

I prefer my courts to be squeaky clean, thank you.

Of course I suppose former klansman, the late great Senator Robert Byrd (WV-D) likely would beg to differ.

Thanks for this forum, Schnauzer!

Anonymous said...

At this point Kallon has been on the bench for a few years. What is his record as a judge on employment and civil rights cases? That's much more relevant than his experience at Bradley Arant. Roger had some personal experience before Kallon, but that is not helpful for two reasons - Roger's cases weren't employment or civil rights AND Roger is too personally biased to be a fair critic.

Another point: the ABA rated Kallon as "well qualified." That means they believe he has good judicial temperament which takes fairness and impartiality into account. The ABA has dinged other candidates on this same score.

Pardon me for saying this, but this reporting has major holes.

Anonymous said...

You love to get on your high horse, but you think nothing of insulting anyone with whom you disagree. "Of course, I understand your mind probably isn't capable of expressing itself above a third-grade level. "

Anonymous said...

Curious...Roger, have you or any of your readers ever heard of a judicial nominee get blocked because they defended a certain case? I am not weighing pros and cons of Abdul at this point, just a question I've never thought to ask.

Anonymous said...

Nov.2009 Kallon was nominated by Pres. Obama and backed by both of Alabama's Republican Senators.
Feb 2016
Kallon was nominated by Pres. Obama and opposed by both of Alabama's Republican Senators.
The reason for; Bradley Arant.
The reason against; Bradley Arant

Anonymous said...

What was the outcome of McCormack, et al v. Campus Crest Group, et al. (WD of NC, 2011)? I'll be honest and admit, I just don't feel like looking it up, but based on your use of the word "allegations", I take it there was no finding of fact. Just because someone alleges something, doesn't make it true. If it were that frequent of an occurrence, someone would have audio or video evidence proving it happened.

Anonymous said...

Why hold up the system, full speed ahead, after all Pryor sailed right thru the senate judiciary after perjuring himself along with both senators to get his reward, for keeping Siegelman out of state politics, a lifetime appointment to a federal judgeship; full frontal nude photos, sealed ballot boxes, Jim Folsom, Jr. investigation antics, and whatever else cover ups; they don't make any difference, remember sessions sitting with Obama at national prayer breakfast as the keynote speaker spoke, then pryor afterwards getting an appointment from Obama to some sort of judicial board.................. these people don't care! It in your face, if you don't like it, nobody cares, nobody is going to do anything to correct it.

Sessions racial history and judicial injustices tied to pryor's mentoring as assistant may well be Trump's soon undoing for his own presidency, apparently Trump still not knowing of pryor's photogenic style nudie's and sessions racial basis' and injustices; Trump, like him or not, Sessions and Pryor worst, everyone should for this sate take time to write, call, email, Trump's campaoign, and/or news media amking them a national story............ or as always have continue to sit on our butts and still be complaining this same time next year about nothing getting done!

Recently Trump has been under fire about david duke and the KKK, won't be a better time than now to aggressively pursue these stories for the benefiting of our state.

legalschnauzer said...

Thanks for an interesting comment, @6:01. Sessions also has some Pryoresque skeletons in his closet, and I'm working on that story as we speak. I agree that Trump will regret the day he aligned himself with Jeff Sessions.

legalschnauzer said...

I've contacted an attorney on the plaintiffs' side, but have not heard back, @5:24. My best guess is that the case settled, which would mean it never got to the "finding of fact" stage. Given what I know of Ted Rollins and his management abilities, I have zero doubt the allegations are true. I've heard many similar tales from Campus Crest employees who did not sue.

legalschnauzer said...

You nailed it, @1:52. Also, Artur Davis pushed for Kallon, at a time when he was trying to curry favor with Bradley Arant's corporate clients for a run at governor. (We all know how that turned out.) A number of sources have told me that Doug Jones, former U.S. attorney and Haskell slaughter lawyer, also has ear of someone in Obama admin. Jones, of course, is Rob Riley's buddy and charged Don Siegelman $300,000 to accomplish absolutely nothing for his defense. Jones only helped the prosecution by agreeing to extend the statute of limitations.

legalschnauzer said...

No, @12:58, I've never heard of such a situation, and my guess is that the Senate usually doesn't look deeply enough to even know what a nominee has done as a lawyer. In my view, Kallon shouldn't be rejected because of his role in the Campus Crest case, but because he's been a terrible district judge, one who clearly violates "black letter" law to reach the result someone wants him to reach. I've already shown that here and have a number of posts coming on that subject. (BTW, that's not just my opinion; I will show that one of Kallon's judicial brethren has ripped him to shreds for misapplying the law.)

I assume Obama takes pride in the fact that his admin has behaved with relative integrity and honor. Supporting Abdul Kallon will not enhance that legacy.

legalschnauzer said...

You need to do a little more research, @12:49. I generally don't "insult" anyone because they "disagree with me." It's almost always because they've shown, via multiple comments, that they are in fact stupid, a troll, a bombthrower, a bully, or whatever.

In my view, it's not an insult if the person has proven that my assessment is true.

legalschnauzer said...

I agree, @12:27, that Kallon's record on the bench is more important than his time at BABC. But I've shown through more than a dozen posts that he consistently misapplies the law to favor corporate/institutional parties. I will provide more evidence in upcoming posts, including comments from a fellow judge who ripped Kallon for misapplying the law. In other words, this is not just my opinion about my cases. It's also the opinion of a judge, in a case that had nothing to do with me.

For the record, my wife and I have had three cases before Kallon (all butchered), and two involved employment/civil rights.

You might think my reporting has holes, but the truth is you haven't done the legwork required to discover that my analysis is right on target, supported by citations to fact and law.

BTW, I don't think ABA assessments are worth a flip. If you put on a robe and don't act like a madman behind the bench, they say you have judicial "temperament." That doesn't say a thing about a judge's incompetence or lack of ethics. That's where Kallon comes up way short.

legalschnauzer said...

Thanks for the thoughtful comment, Ellis D. Hope you will make many return visits and join the discussion. It's usually fairly sane, but the Ashley Madison reporting has the legal tribe in a lather.

legalschnauzer said...

K:

Your ability to trample facts is impressive. If you note my comment above, I agree that Campus Crest deserved a defense--it's essential to our system. But since Kallon now is a federal judge, I believe the public deserves to know the kinds of defendants he's worked with--sort of like the public deserves to know Robert Byrd once was a member of the KKK.

As to your other "claims," my reporting on Jessica Garrison never has been proven false or defamtory, under the law, in court. The same holds true for my reporting on Rob Riley and Liberty Duke.

I've mostly represented myself, but Davy Hay was my lawyer for a while. I reported on that extensively here. Do a search for "Davy Hay," and you will find the posts.

Anonymous said...

Doug Jones is saving his "behind" from the wrath of Milton Mcgregor.

legalschnauzer said...

Interesting comment, @8:26. How do you think that one will turn out? I'm pulling for McGregor all the way. In fact, if McGregor decides to roast Mr. Jones and feed him to crocodiles, I want a front-row seat.

I'm assuming McGregor blames Jones, in part, for the infamous bingo prosecution in Alabama, which produced zero guilty verdicts.

I've heard McGregor dropped his association with Haskell Slaughter because the firm made the mistake of hiring Doug Jones. I also hear that loss of billable hours from VictoryLand was a major factor in Haskell Slaughter's implosion.

Anonymous said...

Keep in mind.If McGregor was a bigger fish to distract the probe in Auburn, Then Bob Caviness was possibly killed.There is no statue of limitations. Lying in a federal probe could get you as many years as the person being investigated.

Robby Scott Hill said...

I'll never forget one of my law professors saying, everybody deserves representation, but as a Christian, there are some cases you should personally not take. I'm not sure Abraham Lincoln would have been elected President had he owned slaves & not endured a form of servitude when he was a child. Kallon is looking for an appointment from the 21st Century Democratic Party, not the 19th Century Democratic Party. Abraham Lincoln would have had a difficult time nominating Abdul Kallon.

legalschnauzer said...

Where do you think Doug Jones fits into the picture, @9:18? I'll never believe Bob Caviness and Ralph Stacy killed themselves. And I don't believe Major Bashinsky killed himself, although I'm not sure how he might have crossed swords with someone. I think it's possible either Bashinsky or the family's lawyers knew how Indian gaming money was being funneled to Bob Riley campaign.

Anonymous said...

Doug Jones was Ronnie Gilley's attorney.Doug Jones had two choices.Join forces with Joe Espy and help McGregor or advise Gilley to testify against McGregor and help Riley. He chose the latter.Another thing that would help you sort things out.The Retirement System of Alabama got caught up in the land stealing in Lee County.

legalschnauzer said...

Interesting about RSA. How did they get caught up in Lee County deal? Does that have something to do with Leura Canary's hiring at RSA?

What's the status of the Lee County land-stealing situation? I assume it's separate from the Mike Hubbard ethics case?

As I recall, Gilley wound up with an attorney who had a history with drug trafficking. I think the guy also appears on Ashley Madison.

It makes sense that Jones would side with Rob Riley. I suspect Jones is about as dirty as they come, given his ties to both Riley and Paul Bryant Jr. Talk about a DINO. Doug Jones is the poster child for that.

Anonymous said...

The RSA golf course is on a winding two lane road.Aldot decided to relocate AL hwy 147 from Auburn's new 85 Exit, around west Auburn ,to north Auburn,by the RSA golf course.It would become an outer loop. The golf course needs this 4lane access.West Auburn property is owned by poor whites and blacks.We all know ALDOT does not build roads thru land owned by poor whites and blacks. Lee County was going to use the Tax Increment Method.TO get all the property into the county,Auburn submitted a deannexation to the Justice Dept. The Probate Judge certifed that no qualified electors lived on the property.One county commissioner wanted his property deannexed,and included his 40 acres of commercial property. This county commissioner wanted the railroad to install a quiet zone at his property.The county does not have the money to put crossing gates at the rr tracks at two schools. The county applied for and got a federal grant for the rr gates at the county commissioners property which is a 200 ft dead end road.
IN November 2009, It was brought to the Justice Dept's attention in Washington D.C. that the appraisal for this 40 acre deannexed property is a low cost trailer park on Martin Luther King Blvd.I would imagine they would be curious as to why there were no qualified voters. Why so many people got tied up with some one who was begging the Justice Dept to come look how we steal land in Alabama,I'll never know.They showed up Dec 2009.Mike Hubbard will explain what happened next.

legalschnauzer said...

You think this will be part of the Hubbard trial? If Hubbard is involved, does that make it likely Bob Riley is involved, too?

Anonymous said...

Campus Crest bought land from some of the people involved in the tax increment district.They eventually had to build around some of it.The McGregor investigation began in 2010 by the Justice Dept out of Washington D.C. McGregor being set up was a local operation. Riley was not involved in setting McGregor up. When the Mike Hubbard investigation began, the local people involved, began protecting their assets. The Justice Dept used the same people to get McGregor as they used for Siegleman.
McGregor is going to sue for big money once he opens back up. Mike Hubbard's trial will not be until federal indictments are served. Baxley represents Hubbard and some of the state's witnesses. Mike will want a different attorney, therefore you will see another delay. Mike's defense is based on prosecuter misconduct.What happened to McGregor has to be made public first.

Anonymous said...

Robert Gibbs was Obama's press secetary during the first term. He is from Auburn. You began your coverage of Rollins in 2010. You mentioned some time later that the White House was reading your posts. Knowing what I do about what was going on in Auburn at this time, I thought you were going to expose what was happening. You had many post which led me to believe you were following the situation.The people at the White House probably thought the same thing. I would imagine they were also interested in your comments.

legalschnauzer said...

It's possible the White House was following the blog for that reason. I don't remember what posts they were looking at, but we've had probably two dozen or more WH visits, so it's hard to keep up with all of them. I had never heard of any Lee County land-stealing issues until you brought them up here in the comment section. Actually, I take that back: I do recall someone contacting me via e-mail about something along those lines, but the person had a convoluted way of writing, and I never could grasp what he was trying to get at. Not sure if that person was talking about the same situation you are, but it's possible. He and I might have talked on the phone; I'm not sure.

My focus re: Rollins has been primarily on his divorce case, not so much on Campus Crest's business dealings. In my defense, I guess, I was based quite a ways from Lee County and never have been real tied into the Auburn loop.

Would be interested in documents or other information that might shine light on this. I gather you feel this situation is not over, that it's going to come to the surface at some point. Am I right about that?

Anonymous said...

It is not over. THE city manager of Auburn told me he had recieved a phone call from the Justice Dept asking if some land in a different location was supposed to have been deannexed. It belongs to a college professor. The deannexation resulted in the city street reverting back to a county road.The professor said he did not want to be deannexed. The tax increment district needed the road. Violating some one's voting rights is serious business.

Anonymous said...

A tax increment district gives the county the power of eminant domaine, if your property is blight. The county commissioners determine blight .you have 10 days to appeal and only if you can prove fraud. They sent me a 15 dollar tax bill.All my buildings and house were of no value. I had to threaten legal action to pay taxes.
My elderly neighbor inherited her house through a will. The county changed her deed to show that she and her sister owned it together. That is a defective title and is considered blight. Another elderly neighbor was told by the revenve dept,that if he claimed he was using his house for storage, he could save on taxes.A house used for storage is blight. Some land next door is owned by a vietnam veteran, who gave his life for his country,but is still breathing.A low life bought one half acre from him and got a conservators deed that reads; beginning at section 33 ,go east 500 feet to a stump,go 1000 feet north to a spindle in a tree, this is the point of beginning of land here in described and conveyed.that means they got all his land for the price of one half acre. THis is just in my immediate area. NO Roger, This aint over yet.
When I started complaining, the local FBI tried to entrap me for drugs. They had arrested a former employee of mine for drugs. They told his wife to call me and beg me to give her some money to feed her children. They were ready to bust me once I gave her the cash.You did notice that the local FBI testified against McGregor.McGregor said when he was arrested ,to the FBI;"
You are making the biggest mistake of your life" We will see.