Top employee claims American responsible for attack, blackballed herafter she reported assault
FORT WORTH, Texas – A longtime flight attendant for American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) has updated her sexual assault claim against the Fort Worth-based carrier, for the first time revealing her name in the court filing.
Kimberly Goesling, 52, of Fort Worth, initially filed the claim as Jane Doe, as is common in cases where sexual assault victims step forward. She later told the story of what happened to her – and American’s role in it – in a Facebook and Instagram video that has reached more than 50,000 people. Click here to watch.
Now, in her first interview, Goesling speaks to former Fox News anchor and empowerment advocate Gretchen Carlson for her new internet series called,
“The LIFT UP.” Watch that interview here.
“I am done. I am no longer going to hide from what happened because I’m not the bad guy and I have nothing to hide from,” Ms. Goesling said. “If anyone should be hiding, it’s American and not me.”
Ms. Goesling, a nearly 30-year flight attendant for the airline, has a work record that puts her among the company’s best. She was a flight crew leader and worked on the airline’s recruitment and training teams. More than once, she received glowing reviews for work performance, often resulting in special assignments.
In January 2018, one such trip took her to Germany, where along with other American Airlines employees, she helped develop a special international menu for first- and business-class passengers.
Also on the trip was a celebrity chef whom American hired even though the company knew of prior allegations against him for alcohol abuse and inappropriate sexual relationships, according to the lawsuit. On the final night of the group’s stay, the chef forced his way into Ms. Goesling’s hotel room and sexually assaulted her. American’s own investigation later showed he admitted to the attack.
“American is responsible because it hired the predator, it provided the alcohol he drank and then its managers encouraged him to go to Kimberly’s room,” said attorney Robert Miller of Dallas’ Miller Bryant LLP law firm, who represents Ms. Goesling. “In fact, we’ll be able to show that this predator only had Kimberly’s hotel room number because a member of American’s management team gave it to him.”
When Ms. Goesling reported the attack to the company, managers promised to pay for treatment and allow her time away from work shifts, as needed. They did neither, instead removing her from her coveted position on the airline’s recruitment team.
Her lawsuit includes claims of sexual assault, conspiracy and retaliation. The case is Kimberly Goesling v. American Airlines et al., Cause No. 342-314565-20 in the 342nd Judicial District Court in Tarrant County.
Dallas-based Miller Bryant LLP represents companies and individual clients from the U.S., Canada and the Far East. We focus on Texas business law and civil dispute resolution. More information at www.miller-brown.com.