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Published December 20 2012

Jury awards demoted Minneapolis firefighter $420,000

MINNEAPOLIS — A federal jury has awarded a demoted Minneapolis firefighter $420,000.

Capt. Jean Kidd says in 2009 then-Fire Chief Alex Jackson unfairly removed her from the rank of deputy chief. Kidd alleged the demotion cost her tens of thousands of dollars in lost salary and benefits as well as emotional distress.

The jury Thursday also awarded Kidd attorneys’ fees yet to be determined.

Jackson said his decision to demote Kidd was based on his assessment that she was hard to work with. However, Jackson's decision came after Kidd wrote an anonymous, negative evaluation of Jackson's performance.

Kidd's attorney says Jackson's decision to demote Kidd violated his client's First Amendment rights.

Minnesota Public Radio News reports that Minneapolis city attorney Susan Segal says the city is considering an appeal.