Capstone Orthopedic, Sacramento, California, has won an unfair-competition lawsuit brought against it by Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics, a division of Hanger Orthopedic Group, Bethesda, Maryland. The suit was served by Hanger against Capstone and two individual defendants in late December 2006. According to Capstone, after “more than two years of litigation, culminating in five days of testimony from more than 15 witnesses,” a U.S. Federal Court jury took less than two hours to determine unanimously that there was no evidence of any wrongdoing on the part of Capstone or any defendant.
Capstone operates five patient care clinics in northern California, and was formed in July 2006 by Glen Ellis, CPO, Ann Hurley, CO, and Charles Drayton, MBA. According to Capstone, the suit claimed more than 30 charges against Capstone, Ellis, and other Capstone employees. Capstone said, “The claims included misappropriation of trade secrets, unlawful access to Hanger computer systems, unlawful solicitation of referral sources and employees, breach of contract against Ellis, and breach of loyalty and fiduciary duty. Hanger abandoned its claims for solicitation of referral sources sometime before the case went to trial on February 10, 2009, in U.S. Federal Court in Sacramento, [California].”
Ellis, who is Capstone’s CEO, said, “It’s a good feeling to have the courts affirm what Capstone has always contended in this matter; namely, that we didn’t do anything wrong.” Capstone has stated that it and its employees are considering pursuing a countersuit against Hanger, which operates more than 600 patient care clinics throughout the United States.