Employer Allegedly Called Black Trucker Racial Slurs, Threatened To ‘Kill Him’ Because He Complained His Paycheck Was Short; Now Must Pay Former Worker $1.6 Million

An Oklahoma man was awarded over $1.6 million last month after filing a federal lawsuit against his employer, accusing them of racial discrimination. 

Roscoe Gatewood, who is Black, sued Ohio trucking company Hamidiy Inc. last year saying that he was terminated from his job due to his race, according to Landline citing court documents. 

In June 2022, records say the Oklahoma City man was carrying out a delivery when he contacted his supervisor to ask about his paycheck that was missing $3,000, the outlet reported. However, later that day, he received a call from the president of the company, identified as “Russ” in the legal documents.

Judge Awards Former Truck Driver $1.6 Million
Roscoe Gatewood was awarded $1.6 million following a lawsuit filed against his former employer, Hamidiy, Inc. (KOCO5 News/ Youtube screenshot)

Russ is accused of threatening the trucker and his family, calling him racial slurs, and abruptly firing him from his position.

“They had a payment they were behind on, so he called to check in, and that resulted in outrageous conduct on their part,” attorney Mark Hammons told KOCO-TV. “He was threatened. They used terrible racial epithets in talking to him, and then fired him on the spot and still didn’t pay him the money he was owed.”

Per the local news station, court documents alleged that the president also instructed Gatewood to immediately get out of the company truck and leave it at a specific location, or Russ would “kill him.” 

Gatewood went in depth about his experience during a court appearance earlier this year and the offensive language the president allegedly used against him during the phone conversation.

“This man [Russ, president of Hamidiy] went on to tell me how, before he got into trucking, he was in the mafia; he’s killed many [racial slur] before,” Gatewood recalled in April, as Landline reported. “Where he come from, he’d feed his dog before he would feed a [racial slur]. ‘We call you the N-word over there. We have no respect for you.”

According to the report, Gatewood has been awarded $1 million in punitive damages and an additional $628,325 in compensatory damages by Western District of Oklahoma U.S. District Judge Patrick Wyrick after Hamidiy did not defend itself in the lawsuit.

Read the original story here.

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