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Former UCD police officer’s lawsuit heads to trial

By From page A4 | November 07, 2012

Calvin Chang. Courtesy photo

SACRAMENTO — Pretrial proceedings began in a Sacramento courtroom this week in the case of a former UC Davis police officer who is suing the University of California regents for allegedly violating the terms of an earlier discrimination lawsuit.

Calvin Chang filed the breach-of-contract lawsuit in 2009, a year after reaching an out-of-court settlement agreement with the university regarding the 2005 suit. The earlier legal action claimed he was subjected to on-the-job harassment and discrimination because he is both Asian-American and gay.

The later suit alleges that Chang, 44, was unable to find work as a police officer because of negative documents, including pages from an internal affairs investigation, he says were added to his personnel file without his knowledge following the 2008 settlement.

Under that agreement, Chang and his then-attorney received payment of $240,000 from the university, which admitted no wrongdoing in its employment practices. Chang also agreed to dismiss his lawsuit and resign from the UCD Police Department.

In addition to breach of contract, Chang claims the university violated the Police Officer Bill of Rights Act. UC officials have denied the current allegations, saying it complied with the terms of the settlement.

UCD’s former police chief, Annette Spicuzza, also is named as a defendant and is expected to be called as a witness during the upcoming trial. She resigned from the department in April in the wake of the campus’ pepper-spray scandal.

The civil trial is being heard before Sacramento Superior Court Judge James McFetridge. Jury selection had been scheduled to begin Wednesday morning, but was put off while the attorneys argue pretrial motions and handle other scheduling matters, a court clerk said.

— Reach Lauren Keene at [email protected] or (530) 747-8048. Follow her on Twitter @laurenkeene

Lauren Keene

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