TRAVERSE CITY — A former disc jockey who contends he was harassed, abused and underpaid by a local radio station owner filed a lawsuit. Daniel S. Harrell, also known as Dan Stevens, worked as a disc jockey, production manager and sales person for WLDR-FM 101.9 “Sunny Country” from October 2007 until December, according to his suit. The suit names station owner Roy Henderson and several radio companies that “share authority” over the station, said Harrell’s attorney, Jeff Jocks The suit alleges Henderson “on a regular and systematic basis, and without provocation, harassed, insulted, assaulted, battered, demeaned, enslaved and violated” Harrell throughout his course of employment. Threats and assaults made on Harrell by Henderson “created in him a well-founded and continuing fear of imminent peril,” according to the suit. Jocks, of the Traverse City firm Olson, Bzdok & Howard, wouldn’t elaborate on the nature of the abuse.
“There was some contact,” Jocks said. Harrell also contends Henderson broke the law by firing him when he asked for medical leave in December. A breach of contract count in the suit alleges Henderson paid Harrell substantially less than the two agreed upon and forced Harrell to work up to 80 hours a week without overtime. Harrell seeks at least $25,000 in damages.
Henderson deferred comment to his attorney, Will Davison, of the Traverse City firm Running, Wise & Ford. Davison said he’s just beginning to review the suit and isn’t ready to give detailed comment, though he called the suit’s credibility into question “There are some factual allegations in there that are basically non-existent … they just didn’t happen,” Davison said.