This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2004).







Raymond Parker,





Commonbond Housing (Corp),



Department of Employment and Economic Development,



Filed August 29, 2006


Hudson, Judge


Department of Employment and Economic Development

File No. 1091805



Raymond Parker, 619 Lafayette Road, St. Paul, MN 55130 (pro se relator)


Commonbond Housing Corporation, 328 Kellogg Boulevard West, St. Paul, MN 55102 (respondent)


Linda A. Holmes, Department of Employment and Economic Development, 332 Minnesota Street, Suite E200, St. Paul, MN 55101-1351 (for respondent Department)


            Considered and decided by Worke, Presiding Judge; Kalitowski, Judge; and Hudson, Judge.

U N P U B L I S H E D   O P I N I O N


            Relator challenges the decision of the unemployment-law judge (ULJ) that he was discharged for misconduct.  Because we conclude that relator’s conduct clearly displayed a serious violation of the standards of behavior his employer had a right to expect, we affirm.


            Relator Raymond Parker began to work as a caretaker for respondent Commonbond Housing Corporation in May 2000.  Because of incidents on June 14 and June 21, 2005, he was discharged on June 24, 2005.  A department adjudicator determined that these two incidents were misconduct, and relator appealed.  Following a telephone hearing, an unemployment-law judge (ULJ) again determined that relator was discharged for misconduct.  Relator requested reconsideration, and the ULJ issued an order of affirmation. 

Misconduct includes “any intentional, negligent, or indifferent conduct, on the job or off the job . . . that displays clearly a serious violation of the standards of behavior the employer has the right to reasonably expect of the employee.”  Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subd. 6(a) (2004).  This definition is exclusive; no other definition applies.  Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subd. 6(e) (2004).  Whether an employee’s acts constitute misconduct is a question of law, which this court reviews de novo.  Schmidgall v. FilmTec Corp., 644 N.W.2d 801, 804 (Minn. 2002).  But factual findings are reviewed in the light most favorable to the decision and will not be disturbed if there is evidence that “reasonably tends to sustain” them.  Id.

The June 14 incident involved delivering documents to residents.  Relator’s supervisor, the site manager, testified,

I did what I normally did.  I laid [the documents] by the time clock and the phone on his desk and said, could you please get these out today.

. . . .

He just walked away.  And then I saw him later out in the parking lot and I asked him [why] and he was angry and he just blurted, I’m not gonna deliver any mail for you anymore.  I[t] was like he had just snapped.  I was so caught off guard I went back to the office.

. . . .

I was just stunned the way he, he almost scared me.


The supervisor also testified that she wrote a warning concerning the incident, gave it to relator, and asked him to sign it, but he refused.  Relator testified that he did not deliver the letters and did not sign the warning because he was cleaning up a hallway.  He did not explain why he did not deliver the letters after he finished the cleanup or what connection existed between the cleanup and signing the warning.

Thus, substantial evidence “reasonably tends to sustain” the finding that relator told his supervisor he would not deliver any more mail for her.  See id.  That finding, viewed in the light most favorable to the decision, supports the conclusion that relator was discharged for misconduct. 

            The June 21 incident involved an altercation that relator had with a maintenance supervisor from another site who had been assigned to head a crew at relator’s site.  Acting on orders from relator’s supervisor, the maintenance supervisor had moved a chair and some tools from relator’s work area.  Relator saw the maintenance supervisor driving away, flagged him down, and, using profanity, asked what had happened to the items.  The maintenance supervisor asked relator not to use profanity and said they could sit down and talk about it.  Relator, again using profanity, said he did not want to talk about it and threatened that something was going to happen to the maintenance supervisor if the items were not returned.  When asked about the incident, relator denied that he cursed or threatened anyone. 

The ULJ found that relator “was abusive and threatening toward a maintenance supervisor” because “[the maintenance supervisor’s] testimony is more credible.  [He] did not have a motive to lie about this incident. . . . [His] testimony was consistent and it was not vague.”  “When the parties have presented conflicting evidence on the record, this court must defer to the [ULJ’s] ability to weigh the evidence; we may not weigh that evidence on review.”  Whitehead v. Moonlight Nursing Care, Inc., 529 N.W.2d 350, 352 (Minn. App. 1995).  There is no basis to overturn the ULJ’s credibility determination, and the evidence reasonably tends to sustain the finding that relator abused and threatened the maintenance supervisor.  See Schmidgall, 644 N.W.2d at 804.

            Refusing to comply with a reasonable order and behaving in an abusive and threatening manner are violations of the standard of behavior an employer has a reasonable right to expect.  Relator was discharged for misconduct.  See Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subd. 6(a) (statutory definition of misconduct).