Part 2 of a series
It took $1,396,642 in legal fees and payments to plaintiffs to settle two lawsuits this year against the county and District Attorney Michael Keitz, lawsuits that alleged discrimination, retaliation, harassment, and other violations of federal law.
Of the money paid out in both of the lawsuits against Keitz and the county, $200,000 came from the county treasury and the remainder was paid from the Excessive Insurance Authority, a division of CSAC Insurance, a coalition of county insurance cooperatives into which the county pays.
In a recent press release, Keitz said the Madera County Board of Supervisors and their legal representatives had made a “business decision to end expensive, distracting, and time-consuming litigation,” brought by a former employee, one-time Deputy District Attorney George Fawcett.
This action came on the heels of an earlier out-of-court settlement with another former employee and one current employee of the county, who sued the county together in a single action. Those plaintiffs were former Deputy District Attorney Karen Mitchell and current DA’s office legal secretary Toni Lindsay...