Kingman woman fired from job because her husband's in a motorcycle club

KINGMAN, AZ - A Kingman woman is fighting to get her job back. The city fired her because her husband is affiliated with what is considered an outlawed motorcycle club.

The termination letter was given to Melissa Summerson at the end of 2012. 

The letter states the city of Kingman recently found out that she is connected to the motorcycle club, Desert Road Riders.

The city claims her affiliation with the group would jeopardize the sensitive personnel information she handles in her role as a member of the human resource department.

ABC15 obtained audio testimony where you hear Summerson dispute those claims.

"All personnel have been aware of my relationship with the Desert Road Riders, including people in law enforcement. In addition, from 2002 to 2004, I wore a jacket with the Desert Road Rider patch on it. That jacket would hang on my chair at work when I ran the human resource department," said Summerson.

According to city documents, Kingman police believe the motorcycle club has been involved in activities with the Hells Angels. But Summerson maintains the organization is family and community based.

Summerson worked for the city for a total of 11 years. She worked in various departments, including dispatch, finances and HR. During most of that time, she was married to her husband.

Copies of her employee records show she excelled in every aspect of her job. Her supervisor even made note that she understands how to handle sensitive and confidential information.

"This can't be right that you can just throw out a public employee because of who they associated," said David Kresin, Summerson's attorney. "There is absolutely no connection between the reason given for her termination and her ability to do that job."

But the city of Kingman says it wants to protect other employees, fearing Summerson will give home addresses of officers to club members to retaliate.

Summerson's attorney said her history with the city proves the threat isn't there and all she wants now is her job back.

The city would not comment on the case. An action hearing is set for May.

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