Walmart loses lawsuit brought by worker with Down syndrome

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FILE – In this Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2020, file photo, signage is pictured at a Walmart store in Oklahoma City. Walmart announced Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2021, that it plans to build warehouses at its stores where self-driving robots will fetch groceries and have them ready for shoppers to pick up in an hour or less.
(AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Walmart has lost a federal lawsuit in Wisconsin, as a jury sided with a sales associate who has Down syndrome and alleged that schedule changes exacerbated attendance problems that led to her firing.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission brought the case and announced Friday that a jury in federal court in Green Bay awarded Marlo Spaeth more than $125 million in punitive damages.

But Walmart spokesman Randy Hargrove says under federal law, that will be reduced to the maximum allowed, which is $300,000.

The jury on Thursday also awarded Spaeth $150,000 in compensatory damages.

Hargrove says Walmart is reviewing its legal options.

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