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Home / Opinion / 10-2455 Van Antwerp v. City of Peoria

10-2455 Van Antwerp v. City of Peoria

Age discrimination

Where an employee was not promoted, because the position did not become available as anticipated, the failure to promote was not age discrimination.

“We do not believe Van Antwerp has proffered sufficient evidence to allow a jury to find that the Department’s legitimate reason for rescinding his transfer was a pretext for discrimination. To establish pretext, Van Antwerp must show that the Department’s reason for cancelling his transfer was a lie—not just an error, oddity, or oversight. See Stockwell v. City of Harvey, 597 F.3d 895, 901 (7th Cir. 2010); Faas, 532 F.3d at 642. Van Antwerp’s strongest evidence on this point consisted of statements made by Little that he did not inform Department management that he was going to retire early; because the Department allegedly was not aware of Little’s intentions, Van Antwerp claims that the Department could not base its decision to rescind his transfer on Little’s early departure. But this is not a full picture of Little’s deposition testimony. Little also stated that he told a number of officers in the Department that he was considering early retirement, and he confirmed that he did retire earlier than expected. Taken in sum, Little’s
statements would not allow a jury to conclude that the Department lied about the reason for rescinding Van
Antwerp’s transfer; at best, they might permit a jury to conclude that the Department made an error in personnel planning or was sloppy in not confirming Little’s retirement. As such, we do not believe a reasonable jury could infer pretext from Little’s statements, and for that reason Van Antwerp’s direct claim fails.”


10-2455 Van Antwerp v. City of Peoria

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois, McDade, J., Kanne, J.

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