Objections to Gay Lawyer's Defamation Claim Overruled
The complaint alleges that, in a March 22, 2012, conversation, Anapol told Downs, "'I do not understand what the deal is about expenses; you do not have a family.'"
The complaint alleges that when Downs responded that his being gay did not mean he did not have a family, Anapol replied, "'Don't you joke about being gay with your friends?'"
The complaint alleges that Downs requested, in writing, a meeting with Ronca and Weiss to discuss the situation, but they refused to meet.
"Instead, they required Downs to sit through an 'exit interview' (which lasted two-and-a-half hours) — that was actually an 'inquisition' as to Downs' intent upon leaving the firm," the complaint said.
On the night of March 23, 2012, the complaint alleges, LeWinter, who at the time was still a shareholder at Anapol Schwartz, called Downs to tell him that Downs' move to Raynes McCarty was off, according to the complaint.
The complaint alleges that LeWinter said Weiss and Anapol Schwartz shareholder Joel Feldman had been pressuring him not to bring Downs with him to Raynes McCarty and had told him that Downs was planning to sue Anapol Schwartz.
"LeWinter told Downs that Weiss made it clear that bringing Downs to Raynes 'would be bad for him [LeWinter] and Raynes,'" the complaint said. "LeWinter stated that Weiss made things very uncomfortable for him and intimated that LeWinter may not even be able to return to the Anapol offices."
According to the complaint, LeWinter told Downs that he had informed Raynes McCarty hiring partner Martin Brigham of the situation, as well as that LeWinter could potentially be called as a witness in the litigation.
Downs told LeWinter he was not planning to sue Anapol Schwartz but that LeWinter should have consulted him before talking to Raynes McCarty, according to the complaint.
LeWinter, however, responded that the intention to sue Anapol Schwartz called into question Downs' character and that Raynes McCarty had a right to know about it, according to the complaint.