Former TMZ Employee Suing For Wrongful Termination Says He Committed No Race Discrimination

Harvey Levin, founder of celebrity gossip site TMZ.com

Jarrett Gaeta, former producer for TMZ, is suing the company for wrongful termination. In addition to wrongful termination, Gaeta is alleging breach of contract, breach of good faith and emotional duress. 

TMZ, a popular celebrity gossip and entertainment news site, fired Gaeta on April 4, 2014 for racist behavior (which he denies.) Because of his termination and tainted reputation, Gaeta claims he has been unable to find work. 

Gaeta said he became a target of internal TMZ investigation for racist behavior after his African-American male subordinate was terminated. The African-American male was fired after being caught rifling through Gaeta’s trash, using his computer, scrolling through his phone and reading his emails. As part of the investigation, Gaeta was accused of asking his subordinate derogatory questions and saying racist remarks including the “N” word. He was also accused of sending his subordinate photos of a gorilla, Bobby Brown, slices of watermelon, cocoa butter cream, and Samuel L. Jackson. Though Gaeta denied all of the allegations and TMZ said they believed him, they still terminated him.

Being fired for racial discrimination when you did not do it is not wrongful termination by itself. For the termination to be illegal it must violate some law. Wonder if Gaeta believes this was just a front for some other illegal reason for his termination. What do you think? Please voice your opinion in the comments below. 

*photo by Lotus Carroll, Flickr

Email or Call Shirazi Law Firm for a consultation: 310-400-5891. Join us on the following networks for the latest legal news:

Shirazi law firm employment law newsletter


Get In Touch:

What City does Shirazi Law Firm practice in?

We get a lot of spam submissions - this question helps us find your message more efficiently. You can find the answer in the address adjacent to this form.
This form does NOT create an attorney-client relationship.

Shirazi Law Firm Logo

Shirazi Law Firm, PC

Shirazi Law Firm, PC

1875 Century Park East,
Suite 1025,
Los Angeles, CA 90067

Phone: 310 400 5891
Fax: 888 908 7359