DATE: Thursday, June 12, 2014
TIME: 1:30 p.m.
WHERE: Neave & Scott, PC, 1819 S. Buckner Blvd., Dallas, Texas 75217
WALTER DANSBY SAGA CONTINUES. DAYS BEFORE FWISD SUPERINTENDENT RESIGNS, JUDGE SIGNS MULTI-MILLION JUDGMENT AGAINST FORT WORTH INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT. SEPARATE LAWSUIT AGAINST DANSBY STILL PENDING.
(Dallas, Texas – June 11, 2014) On March 26, 2014, the trial team of Victoria Neave and Mark Scott obtained a multi-million dollar jury verdict against Fort Worth Independent School District (“FWISD”) on behalf of Mr. Joseph Palazzolo, a former Assistant Principal at FWISD, for FWISD’s blatant retaliation and violations of the Texas Whistleblower Act. Shortly after Mr. Palazzolo reported attendance fraud, discrimination against minority students, and inappropriate sexual relations at FWISD, he was demoted, transferred, and then fired.
During the intense and dramatic week-long trial, a 12-member jury in Wise County, Texas heard emotional and compelling testimony from numerous witnesses and teachers at FWISD who testified regarding the culture of retaliation at FWISD, their fear of testifying, attendance fraud, and unethical and fraudulent practices. Three FWISD Board Members were cross-examined by attorneys Victoria Neave and Mark Scott. The jury found that FWISD had, indeed, retaliated against Mr. Palazzolo and returned a verdict in favor of Mr. Palazzolo in the amount of $2,146,352.09.
On May 29, 2014, the Court signed a Final Judgment confirming the jury’s verdict and awarded additional attorneys’ fees, pre-judgment interest, post-judgment interest, and court costs to Mr. Palazzolo increasing the final judgment against FWISD to more than $2.7 million. The Judge also awarded additional attorneys’ fees to Mr. Palazzolo in the event FWISD appeals. Just days after the Final Judgment was signed, Superintendent Walter Dansby resigned.
SEPARATE LAWSUIT STILL PENDING AGAINST WALTER DANSBY
In March 2014, Neave & Scott, PC filed a separate lawsuit on behalf of Mr. Palazzolo against Walter Dansby for violations of the Texas Open Meetings Act. Dansby ordered microphones to be placed in a closed session of the FWISD Board Meeting which recorded horrific defamatory statements and publicly broadcast them for the whole world to hear via the World Wide Web. FWISD’s own employees confirm in sworn affidavits that Dansby’s order that microphones be placed in the boardroom of the closed special meeting was “unusual,” “odd” and that “[t]here have never been microphones in the Board conference room for closed, executive sessions, except at the June 17, 2013 Board meeting.” This separate lawsuit is still pending against Dansby.