Ex-maitre d' agrees to drop his lawsuit against lawmaker

May 09, 2001|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF

Lawyers for former Annapolis maitre d' Jeb Bello and Del. Melony Ghee Griffith agreed yesterday to a dismissal of his $3.2 million lawsuit against her, ending Bello's claim that the Prince George's County delegate unfairly portrayed him as a racist and cost him his job, then breached their secret settlement.

"We have agreed ... to stand by the statement of Jan. 12," in which Griffith expressed regret, said Thomas McCarthy Jr., a lawyer for Bello, upon leaving Anne Arundel Circuit Court.

Bello, who is white, was fired from his job at the Maryland Inn's Treaty of Paris Restaurant after a March 3, 1999, incident in which Griffith, who is black, alleged that she and a constituent were denied service but a white couple was seated. Bello sued, saying that Griffith portrayed him as a bigot and made it nearly impossible for him to find work.

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