Marin Reaches $786,000 Settlement With Former Employee

As part of a settlement approved Tuesday, the County of Marin will pay $786,000 to a former probation officer who says he was fired out of retaliation for complaints he made.

Marco Ramirez, 45, was terminated in 2009 after more than a decade with the department. The county said Ramirez’ firing was prompted by an internal investigation into alleged misconduct. According to the county, the probe revealed that Ramirez was in San Francisco when he was supposed to be working and that he had used the county car for personal purposes. Ramirez, however, argued the firing was payback for his decision to take officer safety complaints to the civil grand jury, as well as his participation in a federal class action suit over overtime pay.

On February 10, a jury agreed with Ramirez’ version of events and awarded him $436,000 plus legal fees. A hearing to determine whether Ramirez should be reinstated was scheduled to take place on March 4.

As part of the settlement, Ramirez will resolve all claims and will not return to his old job. The money for the payout will come from an existing reserve account.

“We are disappointed and disagree with the jury’s verdict,” said Marin County Counsel Steven Woodside. “We do not believe his termination had anything to do with retaliation. But we are pleased to close this case and move on.”

Read more about the settlement here.