NALCO employee attributes five month absence from work to stress ball injury

Kyle Barnett Jan. 4, 2012, 12:24pm

An Ascension Parish man is suing his former boss and employer for terminating him when he was ordered by medical professionals not to return to work.

Curt Trepaginer filed suit on Dec. 16 in the 23rd Judicial District against NALCO and direct supervisor Allen St. Pierre for wrongful termination.

Trepaginer says he was employed at the Garyville NALCO location as a utility operator when his eye was injured by a stress ball thrown at him by St. Pierre. The suit states the plaintiff had to take off work on July 25, 2010 to seek medical attention and was terminated after not returning to his job by Dec. 17, 2010 for abandoning his post.

Trepaginer asserts he was told by doctors he was referred to by the company for both mental and physical healthcare that he could not return to work. Trepaginer claims in the suit that he was subjected to physical, mental and verbal abuse by St. Pierre.

Damages in an unspecified amount are sought to include lost wages and benefits, back pay and front pay if reinstatement to the job is not possible, loss of promotional opportunities, severe emotional distress, mental anguish, anxiety, depression, humiliation, embarrassment and damage to reputation.

Trepaginer is being represented by Baton Rouge attorney Douglas A. Littlejohn of the Littlejohn Law Firm.

The case has been assigned to Division D Judge John L. Peytavin.

Case number 102177

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