Old Sussex Tech Lawsuit Has Renewed Significance, Plaintiff Says - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Old Sussex Tech Lawsuit Has Renewed Significance, Plaintiff Says

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GEORGETOWN, Del. - In light of a recent audit into Sussex Tech's financial procedures, one man says his experience has new relevance.

Tom Keeton used to teach at the adult division of the school. He says when he worked there, he noticed an employee was copying textbooks.

"When I contacted the sales representative they laughed and asked if I was crazy," he says. "I asked they had given authorization and they laughed and said 'That's how we make our money, we did not.'"

Keeton says the copied textbooks totaled about $500,000 in lost profits for publishers. He says he brought it up to the principal at the time, and her first response was asking him who knew about this. Keeton says the principal later stated that "other people have been out to get me." He says she also asked if anyone should be fired. Weeks later, Keeton says that was him. 

"I can't see any other reason why they would fire me other than the copier question," he says.

Keeton filed a lawsuit claiming the district retaliated against his free speech by bringing up this issue. The suit was settled for $95,000 earlier this year. It is important to note the settlement is not any admission of guilt nor finding of liability. WBOC reached out to Sussex Tech repeatedly about this suit. Neither calls nor emails were returned.

Keeton contacted WBOC after the district's recent audit. He wants taxpayers to know exactly what's happened there, he says.

"When there's smoke, there's fire," he tells WBOC. "Unfortunately the culture that gets established is hard to break."

The lawsuit can be read below. 

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