The opinion of the court was delivered by: POLITAN
This matter comes before the Court on a motion for summary judgment by defendants -- McDonald Pontiac-GMC Truck, Inc., Jack McDonald, and Ed Levinstone -- to dismiss the Complaint of plaintiff, Eliza Reyes. The matter was decided without oral argument, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 78. For the reasons outlined herein, defendants' motion is GRANTED and plaintiff's Complaint is DISMISSED.
Plaintiff Eliza Reyes ("Reyes" or "plaintiff") first began working at defendant McDonald Pontiac-GMC Truck, Inc. ("the dealership") on October 11, 1994. She was employed as the Business Manager, and her duties were varied. She was responsible for, among other things, preparing loan documents and supporting documents for sales and leases; she was responsible for contacting customers after a sale to sell "after-market" items, such as car alarms or premium stereo equipment; she contacted customers to set up delivery schedules; and she ensured that vehicles were properly "prepped" for delivery.
Sales personnel would send customers interested in purchasing a vehicle to Reyes, who would talk about the financial arrangements of the sale and perhaps sell additional goods or services to the customer for the vehicle. Plaintiff's commissions were based on a percentage of the total gross sale, as were the salespersons' commissions.
The first sixty days of plaintiff's employment was considered a trial period, during which time she received a weekly salary of $ 300.00 and a draw against her commissions of $ 300.00. Plaintiff was given an orientation by Levinstone, and she was given a list of vendors to contact to become familiar with their services. She was also given product literature on after-market items that the dealership had a history of selling. During plaintiff's first week, Jack McDonald discussed with plaintiff her lack of interaction with the sales team.
There were several incidents upon which plaintiff relies in support of her claims. Plaintiff alleges that on October 19, 1994, plaintiff attempted to talk to salesperson Patrick Manna about a customer deal. Because Manna was on the phone, plaintiff decided to call the customer to try and sell after-market items. The customer was not interested, but merely wanted to know when he could pick up the car. Plaintiff said she would speak with Manna and get back to the customer.
When plaintiff questioned Manna about an appropriate pick-up time, plaintiff alleges that Manna became verbally abusive and yelled, "Who the f*** told you to call my customer . . . you don't go calling my customer . . . how the f*** do you think I'm going to deliver a car today."
Later, plaintiff was in Tom Berenback's office when Manna came in and threw a deal jacket from a customer across a counter at plaintiff, calling plaintiff "Miss F****** Queen Bee" in front of customers in the showroom.
Plaintiff spoke to defendant Levinstone, the sales manager at the dealership, and recounted the incidents. Levinstone assured plaintiff that he would talk to Manna. Levinstone spoke with both individuals about the working relationship between the two, but the situation continued to deteriorate.
On November 5, 1994, a meeting was held between Manna, plaintiff, and Levinstone. Plaintiff alleges that during the meeting, Manna referred to plaintiff as a "bitch" and stated, "Look, we don't have to be lovers." Plaintiff responded, "That will never happen." At this point, Manna got up to leave. While doing so, he pushed back in his chair, and the table slid a short distance and hit plaintiff in the chest. Though plaintiff alleged that she was injured by the incident, she declined McDonald's offer to take the day off; instead, she worked the remainder of the day.
That same day, plaintiff and Manna met separately with McDonald and Levinstone. Plaintiff complained that she was extremely upset and afraid of Manna's temper. Manna complained that plaintiff had called him names, mishandled his customers, and refused to follow his instructions.
Manna quit the following Wednesday, November 1, and plaintiff was fired by McDonald on November 11, 1994, who stated that plaintiff did not have the qualifications for the job. McDonald maintains that plaintiff became "threatening, ugly, foul [and] vicious" and exclaimed that McDonald would be "sorry" that he was "doing this to her."