Sexual harassment plaintiffs will get a new trial after the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled the trial court erroneously omitted testimony from a co-worker who testified during deposition that a supervisor instructed her to speak negatively about plaintiffs and in favor of the accused harasser.
In Griffin v. City of East Orange, the New Jersey Supreme Court determined the testimony of the co-worker, which was not allowed at trial because it was reportedly irrelevant, was in fact directly pertinent to plaintiffs’ claims for compensatory and punitive damages arising from a hostile work environment. Further, these statements, which involved hearsay, overcame hearsay exceptions because it constituted statements by a party’s agent or servant offered against the party (an exception via N.J.R.E. 803(b)(4) ).
The three accusers had alleged a supervisor created a hostile work environment through sexual harassment, quid pro quo sexual harassment and retaliation. She is seeking both compensatory and punitive damages. Continue reading