Calif. court limits damages in harassment case

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Posted: Nov 30, 2009 5:05 PM

The California Supreme Court has reduced the punitive damages that McKesson Corp. must pay a former employee who claimed she was harassed because she suffered panic attacks and had body odor.

The court on Monday ordered the San Francisco-based drug distributor to pay Charlene Roby $3.8 million.

It cut the amount from the nearly $20 million a Yolo County jury initially awarded the former customer service worker in 2004.

McKesson did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Roby sued McKesson, claiming the company wrongly fired her after a stellar 25-year career. Roby, who took medication for her panic attacks that caused body odor, said her supervisor made negative comments in front of others.

The state high court cited a U.S. Supreme Court ruling indicating it was required to limit the punitive damages.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ The California Supreme Court has reduced the punitive damages that McKesson Corp. must pay a former employee who claimed she was harassed because she suffered panic attacks and had body odor.

The court on Monday ordered the San Francisco-based drug distributor to pay Charlene Roby $3.8 million.

It cut the amount from the nearly $20 million a Yolo County jury initially awarded the former customer service worker in 2004.

Roby sued McKesson, claiming the company wrongly fired her after a stellar 25-year career. Roby, who took medication for her panic attacks that caused body odor, said her supervisor made negative comments in front of others.

The state high court cited a U.S. Supreme Court ruling indicating it was required to limit the punitive damages.