Another reason for me to really, really dislike this guy....
Driver sues Baltimore Ravens owner over dismissal
By Stephanie Hanes
Originally published April 22, 2003
The man who spent six years as the personal driver for
Baltimore Ravens owner Arthur B. Modell is suing his
former boss, saying he was unjustly fired last year
after taking a few days off work for medical reasons.
Jeffrey H. Dickson, 50, said he was unable to drive
Modell for a few days in July because he was taking a
narcotic painkiller prescribed by a physician for
serious gum and sinus inflammation. Soon thereafter,
he said, Modell's son, Ravens President David Modell,
"I had never missed a day's work for [Arthur Modell]
in all those years," Dickson said yesterday from his
new home in Florida. "I never betrayed his confidence.
But I felt very, very betrayed by him."
Dickson, a former Westminster resident, had filed a
complaint in September with the U.S. Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission, which investigates allegations
of workplace discrimination. The EEOC found his case
did not meet its criteria for discrimination stemming
from disabilities, he said.
But Dickson's lawsuit, which was filed this month in
Baltimore County Circuit Court, claims wrongful
termination, not discrimination. It asks for $200,000
in compensatory damages and $1 million in punitive
damages. Dickson's salary was $43,000 when he was
Kevin Byrne, Ravens vice president for public and
community relations, said he was aware of the lawsuit
but had not seen it. He declined to comment on the
allegations in the suit.
"We believe in the judicial process," Byrne said.
"We'll have our say in court, and he'll have his say
in court. ... The one thing I've learned in this
business is that anybody can sue."
According to the lawsuit, Dickson was having a problem
with his gums in July. The Ravens' team doctor, Andrew
Tucker, gave Dickson Percocet, a narcotic painkiller,
and a prescription for another drug.
Dickson "was told that he could not drive after taking
these medications," the lawsuit said.
On July 20, according to the lawsuit, Dickson went to
Carroll County General Hospital and was diagnosed with
a large abscess on his front tooth, as well as swollen
gums and sinuses. Doctors there gave him antibiotics
and more Percocet.
The next day, Modell called Dickson and asked Dickson
to pick him up, according to the lawsuit. But Dickson
said he could not drive because he was under the
effects of the medication.
From July 21 to 25, according to the suit, Dickson
told the Ravens he could not work because he was on
medication. When he called July 26 to say he could
come in, he was told Modell did not need a driver that
From July 29 to Aug. 6, Dickson called into work only
to be told he was not needed, according to the
lawsuit. Then, on Aug. 7, David Modell asked Dickson
to meet him at the Ravens' training camp hotel, the
Best Western in Westminster.
At the hotel, David Modell told Dickson that because
of his father's health problems - Arthur Modell had
suffered a stroke - Dickson's services were no longer
needed, the lawsuit says.
Modell asked Dickson to sign a separation agreement,
which gave Dickson eight weeks' salary in exchange for
Dickson's agreement not to sue the Ravens, according
to the lawsuit. Dickson refused.
Dickson said yesterday that Modell's health excuse was
bogus, noting that Arthur Modell was back at work that
week. Dickson said his lawsuit was about principle.
"I want to make him realize you just don't treat
people this way," he said. "I was with him 24-7. I was
with him in his personal life, in his business time. I
attended his grandchildren's birthday parties. He told
me that I was one of the family. After the way I was
treated, that's one family I don't want to be a part