University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Smith v. Jackson EE-MS-0058
Docket / Court 01-CV-00367 ( S.D. Miss. )
State/Territory Mississippi
Case Type(s) Equal Employment
Special Collection Private Employment Class Actions
Case Summary
On May 14, 2001, several police officers 40 years of age or older filed a lawsuit against the City of Jackson, Mississippi and the Jackson Police Department under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), 29 U. ... read more >
On May 14, 2001, several police officers 40 years of age or older filed a lawsuit against the City of Jackson, Mississippi and the Jackson Police Department under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), 29 U.S.C. § 621 et seq., in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi. The plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, alleged age discrimination and asked the court for injunctive and declaratory relief, as well as compensatory damages. Specifically, the plaintiffs alleged that a pay plan adopted by the city violated the ADEA and caused disparate treatment and disparate impact. The pay plan granted raises to all police officers and police dispatchers in the city's attempt to bring the starting salaries of police officers up to regional averages, but those who had less than five years of tenure received proportionately greater raises when compared to the former pay than those with more seniority.

According to the PACER docket, on June 7, 2002, the defendants filed a motion for summary judgment. On September 6, 2002, the court (Judge William H. Barbour) granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment and dismissed the case with prejudice. The court found that the officers had failed to demonstrate that the city had conducted unlawful age discrimination, that the city had a legitimate reason for the pay plan, and that the ADEA did not enable claims of disparate impact. Smith v. City of Jackson, 2002 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27284 (S.D. Miss. 2002).

The plaintiffs appealed the case. On November 16, 2003, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the judgment regarding disparate impact and vacated the judgment of the District Court regarding disparate treatment, and remanded the case back to the District Court. Smith v. City of Jackson, 351 F.3d. 183 (5th Cir. 2003). Following oral argument, the Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals. Smith v. City of Jackson, 544 U.S. 228 (2005).

According to the PACER docket, on March 30, 2007, a settlement conference was held but no agreement was reached. On October 10, 2007, the court (Judge Barbour) dismissed the case with prejudice due to resolution of the parties' underlying differences and the parties were ordered to bear their own costs and attorney fees.

Emily Kuznick - 04/14/2008

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Issues and Causes of Action
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Affected Gender
Pay / Benefits
Age discrimination
Disparate Treatment
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Race, unspecified
Causes of Action Title VII (including PDA), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e
Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), 29 U.S.C. §§ 621 et seq.
Defendant(s) City of Jackson
Plaintiff Description Police officers and dispatchers with more than 5 years of tenure
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought None on record
Class action status granted Unknown
Prevailing Party Mixed
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Voluntary Dismissal
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2007
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Megacases, Diversity, and the Elusive Goal of Workplace Reform
Written: Mar. 01, 2008
By: Nancy Levit (University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law)
Citation: 49 B.C. L. Rev. 367 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Second Generation Employment Discrimination: A Structural Approach
By: Susan Sturm (Columbia Law School)
Citation: 101 Colum. L. Rev. 458 (2001)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Links The Oyez Project, Smith v City of Jackson, Miss., 544 U.S. 228 (2005).
Posted: Mar. 30, 2005
By: Oyez Project (IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

3:01-cv-00367-WHB-LRA (S.D. Miss.) 10/10/2007
EE-MS-0058-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Motion for Summary Judgment Granted 09/06/2002 (2002 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 27284) (S.D. Miss.)
EE-MS-0058-0003 PDF | LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: LexisNexis
Opinion (Court of Appeals) 11/13/2003 (351 F.3d 183)
EE-MS-0058-0002 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion (Supreme Court) 03/30/2005 (544 U.S. 228)
EE-MS-0058-0004 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Amended Answer to Complaint and Affirmative Defenses 04/04/2006 (2006 WL 1479308)
EE-MS-0058-0001 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Judges Anderson, Linda Randle (S.D. Miss.) [Magistrate]
Barbour, William Henry Jr. (S.D. Miss.)
EE-MS-0058-0003 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Breyer, Stephen Gerald (SCOTUS, First Circuit)
Ginsburg, Ruth Bader (D.C. Circuit, SCOTUS)
Higginbotham, Patrick Errol (Fifth Circuit, N.D. Tex.)
Kennedy, Anthony McLeod (SCOTUS, Ninth Circuit)
King, Carolyn Dineen (Fifth Circuit)
O'Connor, Sandra Day (SCOTUS)
Scalia, Antonin (SCOTUS, D.C. Circuit)
Souter, David Hackett (SCOTUS, First Circuit)
Stevens, John Paul (SCOTUS, Seventh Circuit)
Stewart, Carl E. (Fifth Circuit)
Thomas, Clarence (SCOTUS, D.C. Circuit)
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Brand, Samuel M. Jr. (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0001 | EE-MS-0058-0003 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Goldstein, Thomas C. (District of Columbia)
Horn, Dennis L. (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0001 | EE-MS-0058-0002 | EE-MS-0058-0003 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Begley, Samuel L. (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0002 | EE-MS-0058-0003 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Crutcher, R. Pepper Jr. (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0001 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Martin, Heather White (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0001 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Nager, Glen David (District of Columbia)
Stimley-Priester, E. Charlene (Mississippi)
Teeuwissen, Pieter (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0001 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Williams, J. Anthony (Mississippi)
EE-MS-0058-0001 | EE-MS-0058-0003 | EE-MS-0058-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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