THE AM LAW DAILY

SURVEYS AND RANKINGS

MAGAZINE

SPECIAL REPORTS

The Firms

June 30, 2009 1:53 PM

Ex-Bingham Associate Files Date Rape Suit

Posted by Brian Baxter

Months after a Massachusetts state agency dismissed a sexual harassment and retaliation complaint against Bingham McCutchen filed by a former associate, the firm has been slapped with a civil suit by Michelle Moor, who is seeking damages for allegedly being drugged at a holiday party by a Bingham staffer.

Courthouse News reports that Moor filed an 18-page complaint in Suffolk County Court in Boston last week alleging that she was drugged with Tegretol--an anti-seizure medication that causes memory loss when mixed with alcohol--while attending a lunch party with about 100 other Bingham employees at Lucia Ristorante & Bar in Boston's North End in December 2007.

The Am Law Daily reported on Moor's allegations in May 2008 when the former litigation associate claimed that during an office outing at another Boston restaurant called Grill 23 a month later, a litigation support employee told her that he liked to have sex with unconscious women and knew how to get "roofies," a slang term for the date rape drug Rohypnol. Moor also claims that at least one other female associate was drugged and raped by a Bingham employee the previous year.

Bingham vigorously denied Moor's allegations at the time, stating that the firm had tried to conduct an investigation of the staff member in question but was stymied by Moor's request to keep the incident under wraps. The firm also stated that Moor's rape allegations about another Bingham associate were "fundamentally inaccurate."

The firm received some vindication in April when the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination dismissed Moor's sexual harassment and retaliation complaint against the firm. The state agency said Moor had failed to prove she suffered an adverse employment action because Bingham fired the support staffer that she complained about.

"Investigation reveals insufficient evidence to show complainant's working conditions were so intolerable that she would have felt compelled to resign," states the report.

But Moor, who resigned from Bingham in February 2008 and now works as an associate at 18-lawyer Boston firm Kotin, Crabtree & Strong, vowed to pursue a civil case against Bingham. She is being represented by Inga Bernstein and associate Rachel Stroup from Boston's Zalkind, Rodriguez, Lunt & Duncan.

Ropes & Gray labor and employment partner Robert Gordon is representing Bingham.

In a statement to The Am Law Daily, Bingham spokeswoman Claire Papanastasiou says that the firm is "disappointed that [Moor] persists in pursuing baseless claims against the firm, particularly in light of [MCAD]'s April 9 dismissal of her complaint for lack of probable cause
. . . We recognize that this has been a difficult situation for Ms. Moor, but share the MCAD's view that the claims she has advanced are totally without merit."

Make a comment

Comments (0)
Save & Share: Facebook | Del.ic.ious | | Email |

Reprints & Permissions

Comments

Report offensive comments to The Am Law Daily.

The comments to this entry are closed.

By: TwitterButtons.comhttp://www.facebookloginhut.com/facebook-login/


theamlawdaily@alm.com




From the Law.com Newswire

Sign up to receive Legal Blog Watch by email
View a Sample

Advertisement