United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Owensboro Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
H. McKINLEY JR., DISTRICT JUDGE
matter is before the Court on Defendant's Motion for
Summary Judgment. [DN 19]. Fully briefed, this matter is ripe
for decision. For the following reasons, Defendant's
Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED.
to the Complaint, Mr. Warren King was employed by Custom
Resins, Inc. as an Industrial Electrician for just over seven
years. [DN 1 ¶¶ 9-10]. Custom Resins employed Mr.
King at its Henderson location, a facility that produces
nylon polymers in an industrial setting. [DN 19-1 at 1]. Mr.
King was tasked with fixing various technical problems that
occurred in the plant. [Id.].
August 2013, Mr. King was involved in a motor vehicle
accident which resulted in a disability in his back. [DN 1
¶ 11]. Mr. King asserts that this accident affects his
ability to stand, walk, twist, and carry objects, among other
mobility complications. [Id.]. Later, in 2015, Mr.
King's other disability-Carpal Tunnel syndrome-became
aggravated and required surgery. [Id. ¶¶
12, 14]. Mr. King's Carpal Tunnel syndrome affects his
ability to use his hands and wrists to grip or carry objects.
[Id. ¶ 12].
Mr. King's Carpal Tunnel surgery, he was provided work
restrictions by his physician. [Id. ¶ 15]. Mr.
King claims that he requested a disability accommodation from
Custom Resins and that this request was honored until
November of 2015 when Mr. King's direct supervisor
requested that he perform work outside of his provided
restrictions and accommodation. [Id. ¶ 16]. In
response, Mr. King says he engaged in protected activity and
complained to this supervisor that the request was outside of
his restriction. Mr. King asserts that in response to his
complaint, his supervisor, Mr. Homer Watson, verbally
attacked him-cussing in his face, slamming cabinet doors, and
angrily breaking pieces of work equipment. [Id.
¶¶ 17-18]. After this incident, Mr. King alleges
that Mr. Watson “bullied and harassed him and provided
him with disparate treatment when compared to
similarly-situated employees of [Custom Resins] who did not
suffer from a recognized disability[.]” [Id.
¶ 19]. Specifically, Mr. King alleges that he was not
paid for required lunch breaks when other employees who did
not suffer from a disability or who had not requested a
disability accommodation were paid for those times.
[Id. ¶ 20]. Mr. King explains that the abuse
continued until his employment with Custom Resins was
terminated in May of 2016 for absenteeism. [Id.
King alleges that Custom Resins did not terminate him for
absenteeism but rather because he engaged in a protected
activity and because of his age and disabilities.
[Id. ¶ 22]. Mr. King substantiates this
assertion by claiming he was replaced by an employee
substantially younger and able-bodied. [Id. ¶
November 13, 2017, Mr. King filed a Complaint asserting three
causes of action: (1) age discrimination pursuant to the Age
Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”) and the
Kentucky Civil Rights Act (“KCRA”); (2)
disability discrimination pursuant to the Americans with
Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and the KCRA; and (3)
retaliation pursuant to the ADA and the KCRA. [Id.].
After discovery, Custom Resins moved for summary judgment on
each of Mr. King's three claims arguing he failed to
establish a prima facie case of each. [DN 19-1]. Mr. King
responded and did not oppose the motion as to his age
discrimination claim. However, Mr. King argued that the
submitted evidence established prima facie cases for both
disability discrimination and retaliation. [DN 22]. Custom
Resins replied that Mr. King simply reasserted the
allegations from his Complaint, allegations which fail to
correspond with the submitted evidence. [DN 24].
Standard of Review
the Court may grant a motion for summary judgment, it must
find that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact
and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter
of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). The moving party bears the
initial burden of specifying the basis for its motion and
identifying the portion of the record that demonstrates the
absence of a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986). Once the moving party
satisfies this burden, the non-moving party thereafter must
produce specific facts demonstrating a genuine issue of fact
for trial. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242,
the Court must review the evidence in the light most
favorable to the non-moving party, the non-moving party must
do more than merely show that there is some
“metaphysical doubt as to the material facts.”
Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co., Ltd. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475
U.S. 574, 586 (1986). Instead, the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure require the non-moving party to present specific
facts showing that a genuine factual issue exists by
“citing to particular parts of materials in the
record” or by “showing that the materials cited
do not establish the absence . . . of a genuine
dispute[.]” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(1). “The mere
existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the
[non-moving party's] position will be insufficient; there
must be evidence on which the jury could reasonably find for
the [non-moving party].” Anderson, 477 U.S. at 252.
Resins moves for summary judgment on each of Mr. King's
three claims. The Court will address each of Mr. ...