Recorder Rice files motion to dismiss worker's lawsuit against him

By Christina Stueve Hodges | Sep 27, 2012


Madison County Recorder of Deeds Matt Rice has filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought against him by a former employer of his office.

Casey Hutson claims she was fired by Rice for allegedly supporting his opponent in the November election. She filed the lawsuit Aug. 20 in Madison County Circuit Court.

In his motion to dismiss, Rice states that Hutson cannot allege that Rice was her former employer.

"Rather she simply alleges that he is the currently elected Recorder for Madison County, and, in such capacity, he had management control over the employees of his office," according to the motion filed Sept. 24.

The motion states that Hutson may only sue her employer, Madison County, for common law retaliatory discharge.

"Plaintiff does not allege or establish what "clear mandate of public policy" is implicated in this action, the motion states.

Hutson is represented by Michael Gras of the Law Office of Christopher Cueto in Belleville. Her lawsuit seeks in excess of $50,000 in damages.

In November 2010, Rice, a Republican, was elected as Madison County Recorder.

He is running against Democrat Amy Meyer in the November general election.

Hutson is identified on her LinkedIn profile as a campaign staffer for Madison County Democrats and Marleen Suarez, (D-Collinsville) for Illinois State Representative

The case is assigned to Madison County Circuit Judge William Mudge.

Philip J. Lading and Thomas E. Berry of Sandberg Phoenix & von Gontard represent the defense.

Madison County Case number: 12-L-1319.

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