Fired Jail Major Wins More Than $850K In Medical Leave Suit

PITTSBURGH (AP) – A man fired from his job as the third-highest ranking officer at the county jail in Pittsburgh has won at least $850,000 from a federal court jury that ruled he was wrongly fired because of his age and to make an example of him for taking federally protected medical leave.

The verdict in Walter Mikulan’s lawsuit against Allegheny County was returned late Thursday. The county says it will appeal.

The county says Mikulan was fired for record-keeping issues. But Mikulan says Warden Orlando Harper fired him at age 58 in 2013 in an effort to get rid of older supervisors and because Mikulan used the Family Medical Leave Act for work-related stress at a time the jail was trying to discourage its abuse by some guards.

The verdict could roughly double once a judge calculates other damages.

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One Comment

  1. Edward Urban says:

    The county has finally reaped what they have sown for years…their goal to remove all vestiges of the previous administration by trying to force senior staff personnel to resign by constant harassing or by firing them for some trumped up reason. In doing so they have lost a lot of very qualified personnel with many decades of experience. Because of this it’s no wonder the jail is in chaos. Morale is at its lowest. I had the privilege of working with Major Mikulan for many years as I am retired 35 year veteran of the jail, and found that he was one of the very best managers that the institution ever had. He was an extremely honorable, well educated, loyal and honest man. His unwarranted termination was a loss to the jail and to the county.

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