SACRAMENTO, CA - The quadriplegic attorney who has sued more than 2,100 businesses over disabled access refuses to answer allegations that he never personally visited many of them.
Four former legal assistants who have filed a sexual harassment and wrongful termination lawsuit against Scott Johnson claim they were sent into most of the businesses Johnson sued while he waited outside in his van.
Johnson has not returned phone calls or emails since the story broke in early October, but News10 caught up to him Monday outside the federal courthouse as he arrived for a status conference on one of his active cases.
"My legal counsel has instructed me not to provide any comments," Johnson said in response to multiple questions about the drive-by allegations.
In an earlier interview with News10,the ex-employees expressed remorse for their role in preparing what they now consider fraudulent lawsuits under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
"Ifelt I had noother choice," said Jenna Doeuk, who worked for Johnson for more than fiveyears before being fired this summer.
Micaela Lucas, who said she was forced out of her job two months after Doeuk was fired, broke down when she spoke about going into businesses to look for possible violations.
"I felt horrible, but I had to," Lucas said, wiping away tears.
Roseville attorneyJordan Peters, who represents Johnson's four ex-employees, said lawyers for more than 50 businesses that were targeted by Johnson are waiting to interview the women to determine whether their clients were victims ofdrive-by lawsuits.
"They're going back to cases where he's already settled and they want to argue fraud," Peters said. "They want the settlement overturned and they want their attorney fees."
On average, Johnson had filed one ADA lawsuit every day of the week during the first eight months of the year.
He has not filed a single new case since the story of his ex-employee whistleblowers broke in early October.
by George Warren, GWarren@news10.net