The US Supreme Court [official website] heard oral arguments [day call, PDF] in two cases Monday. In Green v. Brennan [transcript, PDF] the court heard arguments to determine whether, under federal employment discrimination law, the filing period for a constructive discharge claim begins to run when an employee resigns, as five circuits have held, or at the time of an employer’s last allegedly discriminatory act giving rise to the resignation, as three other circuits have held. The case was brought after the plaintiff, a former postmaster for the US Postal Service [official website], was turned down in 2008 for a promotion in favor of a Latino man. He filed a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) [official website] alleging race discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 [text], and the matter was eventually settled. Green alleges that he experienced what he perceived to be threats and harassment about his EEOC filing.
The court also heard arguments in Musacchio v. United States [transcript, PDF]. Michael Mussacchio was found guilty of having fraudulently accessed a protected computer of a competitor. The instruction given at trial required the jury to find that Musacchio both agreed to make unauthorized access and exceeded authorized access, when the statute requires only that he agreed to make unauthorized access or exceed authorized access. On appeal, Musacchio urges that because the government did not object, the erroneous instruction “became the law of the case,” and that the government failed to meet the standard set forth. The Fifth Circuit found against Musacchio and affirmed [opinion, PDF] his sentence.