Former Filner staffer asks for $1.48 million in damages

Irene McCormack Jackson's "emotional distress, pain and suffering" worth $950,000

Irene McCormack Jackson, the former communications director who accused former mayor Bob Filner of sexual harrasment, estimates the emotional and personal injuries she suffered at the hands of Filner to be $1.48 million.

In an October 17 statement of damages, McCormack Jackson's lawyer Gloria Allred split the alleged damages into categories.

The first, and largest amount, were so-called general damages that she suffered working under Filner. Those damages, which included "emotional distress, pain and suffering," amount to $950,000. Her estimated loss of earnings from the ordeal is said to be $11,000; her future loss of earnings is valued at $450,000. Adding to the statement of damages is reimbursement for treatment, to the tune of $70,000.

McCormack Jackson was the first woman to publicly accuse Filner of lewd behavior. She alleged that the former congressman and newly elected mayor often got close and way too personal, telling her he wanted to see her naked, begging for kisses, and suggested that she would better serve the mayor on the job if she came to work sans underwear.

Her eventual lawsuit, as well as numerous additional complaints from other women, was the driving force behind Filner's resignation and his eventual guilty plea to false imprisonment and two counts of misdemeanor battery. One of those two battery charges was from a 72-year-old woman who, as reported by the Reader on July 14, said Filner forced a kiss on her during a monthly meet-and-greet.

As a result of his resignation deal, city attorney Jan Goldsmith has agreed to defend Filner in McCormack Jackson's lawsuit. In September, Goldsmith's office submitted a general denial of the charges in court, stating that McCormack Jackson "was not subjected to unwelcome, harassing conduct by Defendant based on her gender or sex" and that the "harassing conduct alleged by Plaintiff was not sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of Plaintiffs employment at the City and create a hostile or abusive work environment on the basis of sex."

A trial hearing is scheduled for January of next year.

Gloria Allred's office declined to comment when asked why the filing took so long to post and whether she and her client have been in settlement talks.

(updated 11/22 11:05 a.m.)

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So the City Attorney who orchestrated Filner's removal from office now says he did nothing wrong! "was not subjected to unwelcome, harassing conduct by Defendant based on her gender or sex" and that the "harassing conduct alleged by Plaintiff was not sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of Plaintiffs employment at the City and create a hostile or abusive work environment on the basis of sex."

Talk about misleading. The whole time Gloria Allred insinuated it was about Bob Filner resigning and dear Irene just wanted what is best for the city (BS!~) Filner resigned in August and she's on the prowl. At no time did Allred publicly mention a six month job was worth nearly $1.5 million in damages. And what damages to McCormack? Her case is weak to begin with [].

Bob Filner's the one who got press raped and lost employment while McCormack maintained fulltime City of San Diego employment (back in her old job per Todd Gloria's interim stint at mayor) collecting a taxpayer salary and pension in addition to her Port of San Diego benefits. San Diego Reader blogs documented Irene McCormack Jackson's lack of credibility at the height of the Filner press slaughter. Her original attorney's tweet the day Filner resigned is clear: it was a media strategy, not a legal one []. This latest detail - it was about pushing Filner out to maintain status quo and getting McCormack paid for her role. This was always about money and politics while real victims of sexual harassment, men and women, lose everyday on the job.

Thank you DH for staying on top of this. Wish mainstream media was more with it.

These people make me sick! Hope McCormack fryes in court (pun intended).

Emory, didn't you hear Filner say GUILTY. He said it three times. It is unfortunate due process allowed him to plea bargain and not do ANY jail time. McCormack's suit is a victims right in continuing due process. I hope she collects every cent.

Oldie, What I heard was Filner's punishment in another case unrelated to McCormack's, which didn't fit a crime. LAPD officers found to have pressured women to engage in sex acts with them in their car while on duty get disciplinary hearings, while Filner has to plead guilty to murky charges for three Jane Does the public doesn't know a thing about? His punishment for lesser accusations were way off the top compared to cops who misuse their uniforms.,0,2703151.story

Filner has to forfeit his pension for an ass tap, but a coach who rapes a student gets one year in jail and three years probation,0,934637.story.

The actions Filner pled guilty to with three unidentified Jane Does never fit. Logan Jenkins and his wife meet the reasonable woman standard McCormack must meet:

With regard to McCormack, there are staff notes that she wasn't a qualified Comm Director who couldn't write speeches. Filner has consistently denied her allegations from the getgo, including his documented confusion to McCormack's panty bait at their last meeting: ...notes also suggest what may be Filner's defense against a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by a former staffer: she was judged to be doing a poor job and possibly was angry that she was facing removal from her $125,000 a year post. The notes were taken by now-Chief of Staff Lee Burdick at a June 20 "policy meeting" and a June 29 "emergency meeting."

Filner did not waver or plead guilty to a single IMJ claim: Jackson "failed to utilize and exhaust the city of San Diego's internal grievance and/or complaint procedures and remedies." Filner's conduct "was not sufficiently severe or pervasive" to create a hostile or abusive work environment on the basis of sex," according to the city attorney's response. While the document, first revealed by reporter Dorian Hargrove in the San Diego Reader, could be seen as a pro forma response to a civil lawsuit, it also suggests that the city attorney does not plan to merely agree to the lawsuit's assertions and offer a settlement.

Dorian - Thanks again for great reporting. I missed the mainstream pick ups when commented earlier Reader and Tony Perry are the few outlets with objective coverage. Even the CBS pick up Saturday omitted Filner's response to Jackson.

Being disgruntled isn't sexual harassment. She's maintained employment at the City, so not sure where the loss of income comes from and those "emotional" damages were her own doing for courting press instead of filing with the court away from cameras.

Apparently I have missed the part where Filner has to forfeit his pension.

It was widely reported that he lost part of his city pension. Here's one story:

dwbat--Thank you for the reminder. Wasn't the portion of his pention earned after March 6th lost?

A terrible tangled web, best swept aside by a new broom. But I would agree that Tony Perry at the Los Angeles Times and basic Reader reportage were worthy of the designation "journalism." I too appreciated it.

If she wants $1.48 million, she should try to get it from Bob Filner, NOT the taxpayers of San Diego. We've done nothing wrong. We shouldn't have to pay her a cent.

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