Dave Peterson was fired from his position as a software developer at Trusted Response L.L.C a California based emergency dispatch software company after his office manager, Timothy McGavin, used Snapchat to take and share photos of him using a handicap stall in the men’s restroom.
According to Peterson (who had been employed at the software company for 7-years prior to his termination), he had been using the office building’s restroom around 10:30 AM, when his manager Timothy McGavin entered the bathroom and loudly said, “I wonder who’s in there?” referring to the handicap stall that Peterson was occupying. According to Peterson, the office manager then placed his smartphone under the door and took a photograph of him sitting on the toilet.
Multiple Trusted Response L.L.C employees confirmed that shortly after 10:30 AM, they received 2-picture messages from McGavin on the popular image messaging app, Snapchat. At the time of this article, 38- employees have confirmed receiving the photos of Peterson using the restroom. The first message sent by McGavin, showed the outside of a handicap stall located in a men’s restroom with the caption, “I wonder who’s in here….”. The next Snapchat message contained a photo of Peterson using the toilet with the caption, “Of course…its Dave”.
According to Peterson, when he left the restroom, he was approached by McGavin and was notified of his immediate termination. The office manager told Peterson that because he was not disabled, his continued use of the handicap stall was a reflection of poor thought leadership and was in violation of the company’s code of conduct policy.
Peterson told reporters that throughout the 7-years of his employment at Trusted Response L.L.C, he regularly utilized the handicap stall located in the men’s restroom because, according to Peterson, it’s far more comfortable (than the standard sized stalls), and to the best of his knowledge, there are no disabled employees currently working at the company. Though the company’s office manager, Timothy McGavin, has warned employees against using the handicap stalls because they are intended to be used by disabled employees and visitors and should always be available to them when needed, Peterson told reporters that nobody within the office considered that McGavin would actually hold anyone accountable for such a seemingly minor infraction.
Peterson’s story began circulating online after an editorial contributor at the popular internet-media publisher, BuzzFeed, stumbled upon a Facebook post uploaded by Peterson earlier this afternoon. After an article was published detailing Peterson’s circumstance, many social media users, came to Peterson’s defense and began attacking Trusted Response L.L.C. In response to the heavy criticism, the software company utilized Facebook to publicly address the situation, however their seemingly insensitive response seemed to anger social-media users more. You can view screenshots from both Facebook posts below.
Within his interview, Peterson indicated that he had received 2 previous warnings regarding his use of the handicap stall, however, doesn’t believe that to be the real reason behind his termination. He believes that McGavin is grossly unqualified for his position and feels threatened by several of his direct reports. Prior to Trusted Response L.L.C disabling Peterson’s remote network access, he took a screenshot of an email that he received from McGavin on July 13th, 2016. Peterson shared the screenshot online and believes the email to be a reflection of McGavin’s bully-like behavior in the workplace. The email screenshot is below and has been minimally censored due to profanity.
Content of Email (from Timothy McGavin to David Peterson – Dated 7/13/16):
Today in meeting with Rob, he informed me that you already discussed the Huntington/Miller proposal with him. I would strongly recommend you think twice prior to approaching Rob (or any other member of Senior Staff) without my knowledge. Historically – things don’t go well for idiots that go behind my back. Don’t f**k with me Peterson……..McGavin always gets his man.
<Timothy McGavin email signature> “