Because alleged "misconduct" appeared to be a pretext and employee could show disparate treatment, discrimination claim is reinstated.
Kimberly Ondricko sued MGM Grand Detroit for race discrimination. Her claim was dismissed in the District Court and she appealed. Ondricko was a table supervisor and had worked for MGM since 2003. She acknowledged that while she was on duty, a table dealer did not operate the card shuffling machine properly. Under MGM"s rather arbitrary rules, this constitutes "misconduct," and Ondricko was fired. She sued claiming that her firing constituted racial discrimination.
The trial judge had concluded that since Ondricko admitted that she was guilty of a technical violation of policy, and since the discipline record of the Casino showed that the policy was enforced without racial disparity, Ondricko's case must be dismissed. Looking more carefully at the proofs, however, the Sixth Circuit concluded that Ondricko had raised a legitimate arguement of disparate treatment for similar "misconduct" and her case was reinstated.