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Lawyer says lawsuit against Round Rock doctor was retaliation


Lawyer for Rena Salyer said she was sued because she asked her employer to repay the money she had given him.

Attorney says client invited co-workers to a comedy club, not to watch pornography.

The attorney for a former Round Rock emergency center medical director who was sued by her employer said the lawsuit was filed in retaliation for the director’s decision to ask for money the employer owed her.

Dr. Rena Salyer, the former Round Rock Family Emergency Room medical director, gave Dr. Henry Higgins about $350,000 partly to become partners in the emergency center business Higgins had started, said Salyer’s lawyer, Eric Kirkland.

When Salyer decided she didn’t want to be a partner, she asked for her money back but Higgins wouldn’t give it to her, said Kirkland, who practices law in Los Angeles.

Higgins’ lawyer, Mary Dale, said Kirkland isn’t a licensed Texas attorney and she disagreed with his statements. “My clients stand by the allegations set forth in the pleadings, and we are confident the evidence and truth will materialize in court,” said Dale.

Dale is also representing another doctor in the lawsuit — Dr. Nathaniel Greenwood — who works at the Round Rock emergency center.

The lawsuit filed in early March accused Salyer of giving her own medicine to a patient, sending an email inviting her employees to watch pornography and causing the facility to lose more than $200,000 in insurance payments.

The lawsuit also says that, after Salyer was told she was losing her title as medical director, she “tried to coerce female employees to fabricate a sexual harassment story against Dr. Greenwood.” Kirkland called the lawsuit “insane.”

“Rena Salyer is a single mother who was in the military and served as a doctor on an Army base in Afghanistan,” Kirkland said.

He said Salyer didn’t send employees an invitation to watch pornography. She sent employees an email inviting them to watch a comedy act at a comedy club, he said. She also didn’t cause the Round Rock emergency center to lose more than $200,000 in insurance payments by filing required documents too late, Kirkland said.

“That is patently false,” he said. “Everything she did was in compliance with their internal procedures.” Salyer also never gave her own medicine to a patient or tried to coerce employees into making up a sexual harassment story, Kirkland said.

“Why would a doctor who has the ability to prescribe be handing her own medicine to a patient?” said Kirkland.

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