Former deputy suing Eagle County sheriff
August 5, 2011
EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado – A former Eagle County Sheriff’s deputy is suing the sheriff for age and gender discrimination.
Kim Andree sued in U.S. District Court, accusing Sheriff Joe Hoy of discrimination, alleging he refused to honor an agreement they had made when he terminated her in December 2010.
It’s a civil action, and Hoy referred questions to Eagle County Attorney Bryan Treu, who was not available Friday afternoon.
Andree’s attorney, Sander Karp, is demanding a jury trial.
They’re seeking actual and punitive damages, attorneys fees and court costs, and the option of pay with interest or reinstatement.
The Sheriff’s Office has cut positions due to shrinking budgets, as have other county departments.
Andree says she was privy to a “hit list,” of older female employees to be terminated.
At various times in 2010, Andree says she “discussed and supported the claims of gender discrimination” involving Sheriff’s Office employees.
Andree says that in August 2010, she entered into an agreement with Hoy in which she agree to retire, but would stick around until after Hoy’s 2010 election campaign.
In exchange, she says Hoy promised her a severance of two years salary, insurance benefits for 18 months, donating her sick leave to any employee suffering from any terminal or chronic illness, and educational benefits.
Andree says based on that agreement, she began taking classes to prepare for a career after she retired from the Sheriff’s Office.
Andree says in her lawsuit she filed discrimination charges on Oct. 22, 2010, against Hoy with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
On Nov. 15, 2010, following the election in which Hoy narrowly won another term in office, Andree says Hoy called her in, told her he would not abide by their agreement and fired her.
Andree said had been with the Sheriff’s office since 1982. She was the highest-ranking female member of the staff and served as the administrative lieutenant.
“Nonetheless, [Hoy] treated her disparately as compared to male and younger members of the command staff and employees of the Department,” Andree said in her lawsuit.
She says her duties were more extensive than the males, but she was not paid as much. She was replaced by a 27-year-old with less experience, she said.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or firstname.lastname@example.org.