Petco Worker Allegedly Fired In Retaliation For Safety And Fraud Complaints
A wrongful termination claim can arise out of many different circumstances. When an employee is fired in retaliation for complaining about wrongdoing in the workplace, they may have grounds for a wrongful termination case based on whistleblower retaliation.
Many employees hesitate to speak up about unsafe working conditions or illegal activities because they fear their employer will take negative actions against them. However, the law provides important protections to workers who blow the whistle on unlawful conduct in the workplace.
A former longtime employee sued Petco, alleging he was wrongfully terminated from one of the company’s stores in Los Angeles. He claimed he was fired in retaliation for complaining about alleged fraudulent sales practices and unsafe maintenance of dog kennels.
In a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, Jeff Murdock also accused his employer of whistleblower retaliation. He started working as a pet stylist at Petco’s Porter Ranch store in 2010.
In July 2020, he complained about Petco allegedly charging customers for shampoos, conditioners and other grooming products that were out of stock. He refused to sell grooming service upgrades to customers when he was aware that the items were unavailable.
According to the lawsuit, Petco was unhappy with Murdock’s actions as they allegedly just cared about boosting profits. He subsequently told management about the unsafe conditions of the dog kennels, including rusty locking mechanisms.
Murdock and his coworkers saw dogs escaping and were concerned for the safety of other animals, customers and store employees who could be attacked. Even though he notified his bosses about the safety issue, they failed to take immediate action. The kennels were not repaired until around a month later.
Petco suspended Murdock five days after he reported the kennel problem and then fired him two days later for “violation of policy and procedure.” He alleged the real reason for his firing was his complaints about the fraud and safety issues at Petco.
If you suspect your employer fired you for unlawful reasons, reach out to the San Francisco wrongful termination lawyers at McCormack Law Firm. We will listen to what happened and help you determine if you have a wrongful termination case.
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