The Houston restaurant settles the attorney’s sexual assault lawsuit.
After a year-long legal battle with a lawyer who alleged a former Brennan employee sexually assaulted her, the Houston restaurant reached a settlement with the plaintiff. The level of the settlement remains open, but the case was formally dismissed in Harris District Court at the plaintiff’s motion. The original amount tracked was $ 20 million.
The lawsuit was originally filed in January 2019 by an anonymous woman who was originally identified as Jane Doe on court records. It was alleged that “former Brennan bartender Sean Kerrigan drugged the applicant while she was dining, then brought Jane Doe to his home and assaulted her repeatedly for several hours.” The suit also claims “Kerrigan stole prescription drugs and other items from the house”. Later, during a lawsuit, the plaintiff came public and identified herself as attorney Jessica Crutcher.
Photo by Cosmo Wei on Unsplash
Kerrigan was charged with sexual assault but passed away last year. A second former employee, manager Chris Lockhart, was also named on court records. Lockhart was reportedly seen on a surveillance video helping Kerrigan get Crutcher out of the restaurant.
Brennan’s from Houston initially declined any liability. However, the company did not deny that the attack took place. In an official statement, the company partially replied: “For more than 50 years, Brennan’s basic values of care, service and respect for our guests, employees and partners have determined the culture of our family business. For this reason, we were shocked and appalled when a patron currently known as “Jane Doe” claimed in October 2015 that two of our employees had attacked her in her home. The employees were partly dismissed because of the allegation. While we strongly condemn what she claims, we strongly deny any allegation that Brennans or Mr. Brennan-Martin (proprietor) is in any way responsible for the actions of people away from work or off the premises … 2017 , Ms. Doe emailed Brennan’s management that they would bring charges against one of the employees and asked Brennan to work with the Houston Police Department and the Harris County District Attorney, which we both fully did. In the same e-mail correspondence, she thanked Mr. Brennan-Martin for his ‘quick action’ and explicitly stated that Brennan was ‘not to blame’. “
“I’ve done a lot of volunteer work over the years when I’ve seen my clients, survivors of horrific violence, stand up for themselves very boldly,” Crutcher said as she revealed her identity. “I think I should be able to do the same here.”
Crutcher’s attorney, Peter Taaffe, added on her behalf, “I don’t think she sleeps very much. She is a single woman and obviously has great concerns about her safety. She does not feel good. I would like to say that it is, but it is not. She had to say goodbye to her law firm … I think for her it’s about holding people accountable for what happened to her. To do something about it. “
Brennan’s of Houston settles $ 20 million for sexual assault
Houston Restaurant Brennan’s settled sexual harassment lawsuit for $ 20 million