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Ditman v. Alyeska Pipeline Service Co.

United States District Court, D. Alaska

July 11, 2014

ROBERT I. DITMAN, Plaintiff,
v.
ALYESKA PIPELINE SERVICE COMPANY, Defendant.

ORDER AND OPINION [Re: Motions at docket 65, 70 & 85]

JOHN W. SEDWICK, District Judge.

I. MOTION PRESENTED

At docket 65 Plaintiff Robert Ditman ("Plaintiff" or "Ditman") filed a motion for summary judgment regarding his interference with contract claim. At docket 69, Defendant Alyeska Pipeline Service Company ("Defendant" or "Alyeska") filed a response. Plaintiff replied at docket 79 and filed a supplemental reply at docket 83. At docket 70, Defendant filed its motion for summary judgment as to Ditman's interference with contract claim. Plaintiff responded at docket 84. Defendant replied at docket 93. Oral argument was not requested and would not assist the court.

This order also disposes of Ditman's motion for temporary restraining order at docket 85.

II. BACKGROUND

Ditman was employed by Alyeska starting in January of 2002. He worked as a technician until he was terminated in February of 2012 based on Ditman's insubordination, his continued violation of Alyeska's Code of Conduct regarding employee interactions, and his threat of workplace violence.[1] Ditman received his termination notice on February 29, 2012. Shortly thereafter, Alyeska placed a security hold on Ditman, preventing him from accessing Alyeska property, including the right-of-way for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System ("TAPS").[2] The conditions for restoring his access privileges included a workplace/violence anger management assessment. The duration of his security hold was for one year upon completion of the anger management assessment or for three years without completion of the assessment.[3]

Ditman pursued an action against Alyeska for employment discrimination in state court. His First Amended Complaint[4] asserted the following claims:

1) Alyeska discriminated against him on the basis of race in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Alaska Human Rights Act when it failed to promote him, investigated him for alcohol use and attendance problems, and terminated him.

2) Alyeska discriminated against him on the basis of his age in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA") and the Alaska Human Rights Act when it failed to promote him, investigated him for alcohol use and attendance problems, and terminated him.

3) Alyeska discriminated against him on the basis of his disability or perceived disability in violation of the Americans with Disability Act ("ADA") and the Alaska Human Rights Act, by placing him on restricted duty.

4) Alyeska retaliated against him in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the ADEA, and the Alaska Human Rights Act, because he filed a complaint against Alyeska with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC").

5) Alyeska breached the covenant of good faith and fair dealing that is implied in all employment contracts in the State of Alaska by all of the foregoing actions, by breaching company policies, and by not treating him the same as similarly situated employees.

6) Alyeska violated the Family Medical Leave Act ("FMLA") by terminating him for statements he made to a nurse while he was being interviewed for FMLA leave.

Alyeska removed the case to federal court in April of 2012. Subsequently, it moved for summary judgment as to all claims in Ditman's First Amended Complaint. The court granted the motion.[5] The court's order, however, did not dispose of the action because while Alyeska's motion for summary judgment as to the First Amended Complaint was pending, Ditman filed a Second Amended Complaint, adding ...


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