Turner v. Hirschbach Motor Lines, No. 15-3263 (7th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
Hirschbach, a trucking company, offered Turner, an African-American, a job as a driver contingent on his completion of orientation and a drug test. Turner claims that throughout orientation, the evaluator stared at him and once whispered insults. An independent facility collected a urine sample. MedTox split the sample, tested one part, and stored the other. As required by Department of Transportation regulations, MedTox reported Turner's positive result to Hirschbach’s independent medical review officer. Hirschbach’s safety officer, Winegarden, told Turner he could request that the second half of his sample be tested by a different laboratory. Turner told Winegarden he wanted the split test. That test never took place; the reason is disputed. Turner left the orientation program. Hirschbach, as permitted by DOT regulations, reported Turner’s results to an industry consortium which can be seen by future employers, with Turner’s permission. Turner sued under the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. 2000– e(2)(a)(1), 42 U.S.C. 1981, and Illinois civil conspiracy law. The district court granted Hirschbach summary judgment. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. Turner did not respond to most of Hirschbach’s statements of undisputed facts. Giving Turner the benefit of conflicts in the evidence, the court found evidence that Winegarden cancelled the split test and acted based on racial animus but no evidence that Winegarden’s racial animus caused him not to be hired. There was no evidence that the MedTox test was unreliable or that the split test would have been negative.