United States District Court, D. Arizona
Honorable G. Murray Snow, United States District Judge.
before the Court is Defendant Phoenix Motor Company's
Motion for Summary Judgment, (Doc. 11), and Supplement to Its
Motion for Summary Judgment, (Doc. 25). For the following
reasons, the Court denies the motion in part and grants it in
part. (Docs. 11, 25).
Motor Company's (“PMC”) General Manager, Al
LeMoine, hired Alan Maycock as its Marketing Director on
January 2, 2013. Mr. LeMoine had previously worked with Mr.
Maycock at another car dealership. PMC agreed to pay Mr.
Maycock $180, 000 per year for his work as Marketing
Director. The employment contract included a provision that
PMC would later address the possibility of paying Mr. Maycock
a percentage of the company's sales.
ten months later, PMC ownership moved the dealership from
Phoenix to Scottsdale. At this time, Mr. LeMoine asked Mr.
Maycock to perform some responsibilities of a General Sales
Manager (“GSM”). PMC claims that it never fully
promoted Mr. Maycock to work as the GSM but gave him only
some GSM responsibilities. Mr. Maycock claims that PMC fully
promoted him to work as the GSM. (Doc. 1-7 at 6-7). At the
promotion, Mr. Maycock claims that Mr. LeMoine orally agreed
to pay Mr. Maycock commissions based on a percentage of
PMC's sales, but the two never agreed to the specific
details of any additional compensation as GSM. PMC did give
Mr. Maycock access to a demo car, part of a normal
compensation package for GSMs. (Doc. 1-7 at 10, ¶ 2).
this period, employees at PMC regularly referred to Mr.
Maycock as the GSM. For example, Mr. LeMoine once referred to
Mr. Maycock as the GSM in a company-wide email. (Doc. 1-4 at
8, ¶ 43). PMC's HR Director stated that Mr. Maycock
was the GSM. (Doc. 1-7 at 4, ¶ 29). And, PMC's
website displayed Mr. Maycock as the GSM. (Doc. 1-7 at 2,
continued to pay Mr. Maycock his original salary of $15, 000
per month ($180, 000 per year), but PMC never paid additional
commissions to Mr. Maycock. Mr. Maycock discussed PMC's
failure to pay him a commission multiple times. Then, after
Mr. Maycock had performed the responsibilities of a GSM for
about ten months, Mr. LeMoine asked Mr. Maycock to focus
solely on the Marketing Director responsibilities, and Mr.
Maycock lost the perk of driving the demo car. Despite Mr.
Maycock's requests, PMC never paid him any commissions as
Maycock filed a complaint in Arizona state court alleging
breach of contract and other related claims in September
2015, (Doc. 1), and PMC eventually filed a Motion for Summary
Judgment on these claims, (Doc. 11).
Maycock is a Seventh-day Adventist. In his practice of the
tenets of his religion, Mr. Maycock does not work Saturdays
but observes the Sabbath as a holy day from Friday sunset
through Saturday sunset. Because of their previous
relationship, Mr. LeMoine was aware of Mr. Maycock's
religious commitments when he hired him and Mr. LeMoine
accommodated his Sabbath observance.
noted, the dealership moved locations from Phoenix to
Scottsdale between Friday, December 27, 2013 and Tuesday,
December 31, 2013. Mr. Maycock did not help with the physical
move during his Sabbath, but he did go to the new location on
Saturday evening to unpack his personal materials and sweep
the showroom floor. Mr. Maycock did not assist with the move
on Sunday. It was coincident with the move to the new
location, that Mr. Maycock alleges he began performing GSM
the responsibilities of a GSM is to conduct weekly meetings
with the sales team. This meeting typically took place on
Saturdays. Mr. Maycock stated that he had the option of
moving this meeting to another day, but he chose to review
the meeting agenda on Friday and keep the meeting on Saturday
when the rest of the sales team was at the dealership. (Doc.
1-7 at 18). When asked if it bothered him that Mr Maycock did
not work Saturdays, Mr. LeMoine stated that it did not bother
him. (Doc. 30 at 3-4; LeMoine Dep. 68:10-70:6). Mr. Maycock
also stated that “LeMoine supported my decision to not
move the meeting day, ” and “never at any time
did LeMoine or any other person ask me to change my
schedule.” Mr. Maycock admitted that “Mr. LeMoine
never got upset at Maycock for not attending sales meetings
on Saturdays.” (Doc. 30 at 5). A subsequent GSM moved
the sales meetings to Thursday with Mr. LeMoine's
approval. (Doc. 1-5 at 48). And, Mr. Maycock confirmed
PMC's claim that Mr. LeMoine never asked him to work on
Saturdays. (Doc. 1-7 at 6-7).
deposition testimony on August 30, 2016, Mr. LeMoine stated
that Mr. Maycock's absence from the physical move to the
new Scottsdale location both bothered him and “bothered
everybody in the store.” (Doc. 30 at 3-4; LeMoine Dep.
69:16). Counsel for Mr. Maycock asked Mr. LeMoine if these
feelings impacted his decision to take away Mr. Maycock's
responsibilities as General Sales Manager. Mr. LeMoine said,
“I have no idea.” When counsel subsequently
clarified, “You don't know if that affected your
decision in any way?” Mr. LeMoine responded, “Oh,
no, no.” (Doc. 30 at 4; LeMoine Dep. 70:1-6).
hearing Mr. LeMoine's deposition testimony, Mr. Maycock
filed a charge of religious discrimination with the EEOC on
December 21, 2016. (Doc. 26, Exh. 4). He amended his original
contract complaint to include a claim of employment
discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, 42
U.S.C. § 2000e, and a similar claim under Arizona state
law. Mr. Maycock alleges that Mr. LeMoine's deposition
testimony shows that PMC demoted Mr. Maycock from the GSM
position and failed to pay him commissions due to his
religious commitment to observe the Sabbath.
of the new federal discrimination claim, PMC removed the case
to Federal Court. (Doc. 1). PMC subsequently filed this
supplement to its motion for summary judgment to address the
religious discrimination issues. (Doc. 25).
Court grants summary judgment when the movant “shows
that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and
the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). In making this determination, the Court
views the evidence “in a light most favorable to the
non-moving party.” Warren v. City of Carlsbad,
58 F.3d 439, 441 (9th Cir. 1995). “[A] party seeking
summary judgment always bears the initial responsibility of
informing the district court of the basis for its motion, and
identifying those portions of [the record] which it believes
demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material
fact.” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317,
323 (1986). The party opposing summary judgment “may
not rest upon the mere allegations or denials of [the
party's] pleadings, but . . . must set forth specific
facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e); see Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v.
Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586-87 (1986);
Brinson v. Linda Rose Joint Venture, 53 F.3d 1044,
1049 (9th Cir. 1995). Substantive law determines which facts
are material, and “[o]nly disputes over facts that
might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law
will properly preclude the entry of ...