Lawsuit alleges DHEC employee tried to profit from TB outbreak - FOX Carolina 21

Lawsuit alleges DHEC employee tried to profit from TB outbreak

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GREENWOOD, SC (FOX Carolina) -

An amended complaint filed against the state health department and one of its employees alleges that the employee tried to profit from an Upstate outbreak of tuberculosis.

According to the lawsuit filed by Attorney John Reckenbeil on behalf of former Department of Health and Environmental Control nurse and Greenwood County site supervisor, Latrinia Richard, DHEC employee Shea Rabley and a John Doe were added to the lawsuit filed against DHEC in June.

The lawsuit states Rabley and Doe engaged "in a civil conspiracy to conduct an unlawful act."

It also states Richard tried to handle the TB outbreak, issue a public health order and investigate and test people at the school, but Rabley got in the way of her efforts.

Since March 7 when Richard learned about the contagious TB patient, she said she tried to reach out to DHEC's TB office in Columbia for help and guidance to test students and staff at Ninety Six Primary School, according to the lawsuit.

The central TB office in Columbia was made aware of Greenwood County's concerns but failed to test the school until May 31, according to the complaint. Then, Richard and several other Greenwood County DHEC employees were fired June 11 for failing to test the children, the suit states.

Richard claims in the lawsuit that Rabley and Doe conspired to injure her, resulting in her termination and loss of wages, and that conspiracy distracted them from their job, creating the opportunity for financial gain.

On May 17, while still employed with DHEC, the lawsuit states Rabley and Doe incorporated a business called S&T TB Consulting, Inc., which is listed on the secretary of state's website.

The lawsuit does not identify what, if anything, Rabley and Doe actually gained financially.

FOX Carolina reached out to Rabley, who denied commenting about the lawsuit.

When asked if Rabley was still employed by DHEC, spokesman Mark Plowden said he could not comment about employment statuses.

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