Woman Claims Boss’ Rage Caused Her PTSD

     NORFOLK (CN) — A Virginia woman claims in court that her male boss trapped her in a stockroom and assaulted her by punching boxes she was pinned behind.
     In a complaint filed in the Chesapeake City Circuit Court, Patricia Morgan claims that John Brophy, her general manager at a Roses discount store in the city, verbally and physically assaulted her after he became frustrated with the company computer system.
     Morgan says that on March 4, 2016, Brophy received a phone call from the store’s corporate offices, and later told her she needed to get on the computer to “fix a d*** mess,” caused by the office manager.
     Morgan says she didn’t know how to correct the computer problem, so she asked an assistant store manager, Dorothy Hicks, to help.
     But this, she claims, only caused Brophy to become more agitated.
     She says he yelled at her, saying, “There will be hell to pay” when he gets off the phone with Roses corporate office, because “you stupid ***** don’t know how to do your f***ing jobs.”
     Hicks came into the stockroom to correct the problem, and then exited, the complaint says.
     But Morgan says this did little to mollify Brophy.
     She claims she observed his bottom lip quivering, and his face turning red.
     According to the May 26 complaint, Brophy approached Morgan screaming, “Do you know how f***ing educated I am? Do you even understand the *** d*** caliber of stupid *** d*** people I have to deal with on a daily basis?”
     Morgan says she feared Brophy would hurt her, so she moved away from him and took shelter between a nearby staircase and a hand truck loaded with boxes.
     She says Brophy continued yelling insults at her, and then, in a full-on rage, began forcibly shoving the boxes on the hand truck into her.
     Morgan says the boxes pinned her legs and abdomen against the staircase, and that she screamed for Brophy to stop pleas she claims only made him push the boxes against her with greater force.
     According to the complaint, Morgan screamed at Brophy, begging with him to stop.
     “What are you doing? You’re hurting me!” Morgan claims Brophy responded by slamming his fists onto the boxes, breaking through them.
     She also says that while all this was going on, a co-worker, Clinton Smith, was in the stockroom, but did nothing to intervene.
     Morgan claims the assault only ended because Brophy had to struggle to free his arms from the boxes he smashed.
     The incident left her so shaken that she threw up while trying to compose herself in the store’s bathroom, the complaint says.
     Afraid to leave the store, Morgan says she returned to the stockroom, kept to herself, and waited for Brophy him to leave the store.
     Later that day, Brophy approached Morgan and apologized for the earlier assault and battery. While doing so, he again became irate, and went on to another verbal tirade, this time recorded on the stores video surveillance, the complaint says.
     Once Brophy departed the store, Morgan immediately went home.
     She claims that since the incident, she has experienced severe panic attacks and headaches, a loss of appetite and has withdrawn from friends and colleagues.
     She also says that she’s been medically diagnosed with acute post-traumatic stress disorder.
     Morgan is seeking $1 million in compensatory and punitive damages.
     Representatives for Roses and Brophy could not be reached for comment.

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