In 2007 a 70-year-old white co-worker asked Mark Cann to put away a rope. Instead, in what he characterized as a joke, Cann tied it into a noose, saying that it was to put the co-worker "out of his misery."
The noose was observed and reported by a black co-worker with whom Cann had a recent falling out. The Port of Seattle fired Cann, but an arbitrator reinstated him with a 20-day suspension.
A King County Superior Court judge found that too lenient and boosted the suspension to six months.
But in a unanimous decision Thursday, the Supreme Court reinstated the arbitrator's award. The high court held that although Cann's acts were "ignorant and unacceptable," at a time when many working families live month-to-month, 20 days without pay was a significant punishment.
More Northwest Headlines
In Seattle, some fret over rapid growth 2 homes burn near Springdale Taxes from pot sales top $70 million Ordain Women leader steps down Tipped-over firework sparks fire; destroys pickup Lacey motel closes after possible Legionnairesí report Burned bodies of adult and child found in car in Pasco Firefighters battle brush fires in Whidbey Island, Auburn and Pierce County
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.