The Houston Texans have been hit with a lawsuit from a former employee claiming that Brian Gaine, the team's recently fired general manager 'targeted' African Americans to be terminated. Jeff Pope, who worked for the Texans for two years, filed the complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Pope was fired from his role as a security coordinator on May 8. He was told that he was being terminated because he lacked law-enforcement experience. He was offered a severance package but contacted a lawyer to negotiate better terms.
"My client was terminated; we are alleging it was clearly on the basis of race by Mr. Gaine, who was recently terminated by the Texans," Pope's attorney N. Lucy Chukwurah said. "My client was offered a severance. He came to me about negotiating and asked if he should sign it. I found there was more there. I wondered why he was being offered a severance."
The lawsuit names eight other black employees who were fired by Gaine during his time as general manager.
"It appeared, and I believe, that he was targeting all minorities in leadership positions and was set to replace them with non-African Americans. Which he did," Pope wrote in the complaint.
Gaine was fired from his role last Friday (June 7), but the team says the lawsuit had nothing to do with the decision to terminate him.
"We have just been made aware of Mr. Pope's claim," the Texans said in a statement. "We do not comment on pending litigation. The Houston Texans do not tolerate personal or professional discrimination of any kind."
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