Speedway says their employee was acting on her own when she called two friends to assist her and participate in an altercation with a woman who wouldn’t leave one of their Springfield stores.
The company filed a response to a suit where Lesley Moore is suing Speedway, former employee Diamond McNeil and her friend Cassandra Watts in Clark County Common Pleas Court. The lawsuit says Moore was severely beaten by McNeil and Watts to the point she needed to be CareFlighted to Miami Valley Hospital where she was placed on a ventilator and feeding tube for two days.
Moore is seeking more than $25,000 in damages.
“Speedway specifically denies that Ms. McNeil was acting within the scope of her employment in connection with the alleged incident involving the plaintiff and states affirmatively that Ms. McNeil deviated from the course and scope of her employment before and during the occurrence of the alleged events allegedly described in the complaint,” Speedway said in their response.
The lawsuit filed in August alleges that McNeil was an employee of Speedway working at their 1840 S. Limestone St. store Aug. 18, 2018, and Watts was one of those friends.
The suit says Moore was at the store at around 12:47 a.m. that morning and was determined to be bothering customers and refusing to leave the premises. Springfield police were called and Moore was told to leave.
But, “sometime later that morning, while McNeil was still on duty as a clerk at the Speedway station, Moore returned to that location,” the lawsuit says. “McNeil got into a verbal altercation with Moore. Actuated by her duties as a Speedway clerk to remove unwanted individuals from the premises, McNeil then called two friends and asked them to come to the Speedway station to assist her in removing Moore from the premises.”
“Without provocation by Moore, McNeil and Watts severely beat Moore around the head and face while inside the Speedway store,” the lawsuit says. “McNeil and Watts dragged Moore through the Speedway store by her hair and neck. McNeil and Watts threw Moore out the front door of the Speedway store.”
Moore was found injured a few hours later, the lawsuit says.
McNeil pleaded guilty to attempted felonious assault and was sentenced to serve three years in prison. Watts was convicted by a jury and was sentenced to serve two years in prison, according to records.
Speedway said it trains its employees and McNeil went outside that training.
“Speedway admits that its employees are trained on how to respond to unruly customers and are permitted to call law enforcement at any time they feel threatened but denies that Ms. McNeil’s duties included ensuring that “unruly and/or unwanted individuals were asked to leave the premises and, if necessary, removed from the premises.”
Speedway also denied that McNeil called a supervisor following the incident.
Watts also answered the lawsuit in a filing she mailed from prison.
“I do not find it fair that I am being sued for $25,000. I already am paying $2,000 for her medical bills, which I think is very sufficient,’’ she wrote in the filing. “And I am serving a two-year prison term for my mistake on that night. I am currently incarcerated … and am willing to comply with this case and get it figured out but I would need the court date set up for me since I am in prison currently.”
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