Deschutes County, Oregon (July 15, 2015) – There’s something about former District Attorney Patrick Flaherty. According to the Bend Bulletin, that “something” is his central role in transgressing the boundaries of employment law, which has cost the taxpayers of Deschutes County and the State of Oregon a combined $735,000 worth of settlements to plaintiffs.
Flaherty was sued in October, 2014, for $750,000 by a former administrator, Bruce Endicott. Endicott’s cousin is Redmond Mayor George Endicott. Endicott claims Flaherty hired him to use him in order to advance Flaherty’s political career. Endicott’s lawsuit alleged Flaherty defamed him and terminated him only two days after the former DA lost re-election.
The terms of this settlement were announced on July 14, 2015, by the Oregon Department of Justice. As per monetary damages, Endicott will receive $12,500 from each the State and the County for a total award of $25,000.
Besides the monetary award, it was further agreed in the settlement that Deschutes County will give a “neutral” job reference to any employer who makes inquiries about Endicott. Also, as the original lawsuit stated Endicott was terminated, the settlement directed that he is not to be considered terminated and attached an undated resignation letter to be placed in Endicott’s County personnel file.
Endicott agreed not to bring further legal action against the County. All parties signed off on a non-disparagement agreement. The only exception is that Deschutes County is permitted to report “certain matters” to the state or federal veterans agencies concerning Endicott’s application for benefits.
A few years prior to the Endicott lawsuit, three former employees who alleged, among other claims, wrongful termination and discrimination, named Flaherty a defendant in a $22 million lawsuit. In July 2013, they agreed to a $710,000 settlement agreement.