Status conference set in sex crimes lawsuit against DHR

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

COLUMBIANA – A Shelby County Circuit Court judge will hold a status conference in September for a lawsuit brought against a former Shelby County Department of Human Resources employee accused of sex crimes.

Daniel

Daniel

According to court documents, Judge Hewitt “Sonny” Conwill will hold a status hearing for the lawsuit on Sept. 8 at 9 a.m. in the Shelby County Courthouse’s Courtroom No. 6.

The lawsuit was filed in August 2014 by G. Courtney French of the Fuston, Petway and French law firm on behalf of a female DHR client. The lawsuit names 30-year-old Pelham resident and former DHR worker Brandon Daniel, Shelby County DHR supervisor Rasheda Gulley and Shelby County DHR Director Kim Mashego as defendants.

In the lawsuit, the woman claims Daniel visited her home in Alabaster on Aug. 20, 2013, without an appointment and “demanded that the plaintiff allow him to ‘inspect the house.’”

The lawsuit claims Daniel returned to the woman’s house the next day and “demanded that the plaintiff allow him to specifically ‘inspect the bedroom.’”

Daniel then allegedly closed the bedroom door, began kissing the woman’s neck and “demanded that the plaintiff offer him ‘something in return for not taking her kids,’” the lawsuit alleged. Daniel then forced the woman to perform sex acts on him, the lawsuit claims.

The suit also claims Gulley and Mashego “failed to properly hire, train and supervise” Daniel, and claimed they “negligently and wantonly allowed Daniel … to act beyond his authority or under a mistaken interpretation of the law as a DHR worker.”

In September 2014, Gulley and Mashego requested Judge Hewitt Conwill to dismiss the lawsuit, claiming Daniel was “acting outside the line and scope of his employment” during the alleged incident. In early November 2014, Conwill denied the defendants’ request to dismiss the lawsuit.

The woman who filed the lawsuit is seeking a monetary award.

As of July 7, Daniel had charges of soliciting for purpose of influencing official action, indecent exposure, harassment and third-degree theft of property pending against him. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges, and currently is awaiting trial on the matter.