Judge Dismisses Former Public Defender’s Lawsuit

According to the Daily Record, a wrongful termination lawsuit filed by a former state public defender has been dismissed by a Baltimore judge.

Nancy S. Forster, a former State Public Defender, had her $1 million wrongful termination lawsuit dismissed by Judge Pamela J. White. Judge White stated that there was “deep disagreement” on how to perform the agency’s work.

This disagreement resulted in Ms. Forster’s removal back in August of 2009, a removal that was controversial. However, Judge White ruled that the removal was not a violation of the standard in a wrongful termination case.

Judge White notes that both parties can debate and interpret the statutory responsibilities of the board and that Ms. Forster can make reasonable complaints about the restrictions of the Board’s advice and instructions in regards to those instructions interfering with her duties. She adds that all this aside, “there is nothing specified in the Complaint that reflects unlawful … conduct of the Board.”

Assistant attorney general, who handled the case, said she agreed with the ruling, stating that “the opinion speaks for itself.”

According to Ms. Forster’s lawyer, an appeal may be filed. The lawyer states that the decision did not address “the key legal issue,” which was that it was questionable as to whether the board had this type of authority.

In the lawsuit, Ms. Forster alleges that the Board “overstepped their authority,” and that she was wrongfully terminated as a result.