Woman sues Starbucks over underage sex

by in News

Personal Injury News

Article Date: 1/25/2010 | Resource: MLG

Woman sues Starbucks over underage sex

A 20-year-old Orange County woman is suing Starbucks, her former employer, over a sexual relationship she had with another employee when she was 16 years old.

Kati Moore told her story to ABC News’ “20/20,” which aired a report on under-age sex in the workplace Friday.

Starbucks employee Tim Horton pleaded guilty to felony sex with a minor and was sentenced to 180 days in jail last February.
Horton, a supervisor, was 24 and Moore was 16 at the time of the encounter.

Moore’s family has sued Starbucks in federal court, claiming the company failed to protect the minor.

In a statement, Starbucks said that Horton and Moore failed to follow company policy by not disclosing their “personal, consensual relationship.”

“I felt like I didn’t have a choice,” Moore told “20/20.” “I was ashamed and embarrassed. And I felt like he had complete control over my job… he knew all this stuff about my family and my friends and my school.”

Moore said Horton sent her hundreds of text messages, some of them explicit.

Other Starbucks managers knew about the relationship and did nothing to stop it, she said.

After Moore agreed to appear on television, Starbucks’ law firm, Akin Gump, persuaded federal judge Andrew J. Guilford to unseal records of her sexual history.

Guilford agreed on the need to “level the playing field,” according to “20/20,” and unsealed records on Moore’s sex life, according to “20/20.”

According to court records, on Dec. 7, Guilford ordered various records unsealed. Those records showed that Moore had had sex with seven men before meeting Horton, 20/20 reported.

“They are trying to defend themselves by calling me a slut,” she told the program.

The lawsuit has generated a mountain of paperwork in two years; a summary of the records in the case runs 22 pages.

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Jeffrey Marquart