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Turnbow v City of Flint 12.94

Section 29(1)(b)

MISCONDUCT, Credibility

CITE AS: Turnbow v City of Flint, Genesee Circuit Court, No. 91-1128-AE (November 21, 1991).

Appeal pending: No

Claimant: Verlon Turnbow

Employer: City of Flint

Docket No. B89-01891-111882W

CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: A Referee does not have to explain why he found a witness not credible.

FACTS: The claimant was a fire fighter for the City of Flint. Due to previous problems the claimant was offered, and signed, a "last chance" agreement. The agreement provided if the claimant tested positive for illegal drugs or controlled substances he would be terminated. The claimant was subsequently fired when he tested positive for cocaine. The claimant did not contest the test results but asserted a friend, Mr. Pendleton, put cocaine in the claimant's cola drink. Mr. Pendleton testified for the claimant that he put the cocaine in the claimant's drink. The Referee without any explanation found Mr. Pendleton not believable.

DECISION: Claimant is disqualified under Section 29(1)(b).

RATIONALE: Mr. Pendleton's testimony raised questions as to whether Mr. Pendleton still used cocaine. The Referee found Mr. Pendleton was not telling the truth about his use of cocaine and concluded he was also not truthful about spiking the claimant's drink. There was no error in finding Mr. Pendleton not credible. The court indicated:

[T]he court does not find that the referee is required to make a record of why he finds a witness not credible. This court does not find that it should substitute its opinion on credibility for that of the referee who was present while the witness testified. Nor does the court find that the case should be remanded to have the referee issue an opinion explaining why he found Mr. Pendleton's testimony not believable.


3, 14: N/A

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