The executive, Anucha Browne Sanders, has asked for an additional $9.6 million in compensatory damages, which the judge will decide on in the coming weeks. The Garden and Mr. Thomas said they would appeal.
Ms. Browne Sanders accused Mr. Thomas of verbally abusing and sexually harassing her over a two-year period. Less than a month after she formally complained to the Garden, the company chairman, James L. Dolan, fired her. In court, the Garden cited numerous explanations for the dismissal, including poor job performance and the claim that she had interfered with the Garden’s internal investigation of her accusations. Ms. Browne Sanders, who wept when the decision was read, described her victory as important for “the women who don’t have the means and couldn’t possibly have done what I was able to do,” and for “everybody that cares about working in a civil work environment.” Mr. Thomas emerged from the courthouse and said, “I want to say it as loud as I possibly can: I am innocent; I am very innocent. I did not do the things that she accused me in the courtroom of doing.” Patting his chest for emphasis, he added, “I am extremely disappointed that the jury did not see the facts in this case. I will appeal this.” The sordid four-week trial was the latest chapter in the story of a once-respected N.B.A. franchise. During Mr. Thomas’s nearly four-year tenure as president and now coach, the team has spent millions on free agents without any progress toward a championship. And still to come, the Garden faces a second sexual harassment trial brought by a former Rangers cheerleader against team officials. The Garden was ordered to pay $6 million for subjecting Ms. Browne Sanders to a hostile work environment and another $2.6 million for firing her in retaliation. The jury ordered that Mr. Dolan pay $3 million for the retaliation. In his testimony, Mr. Dolan said that he alone made the decision to fire her. Mr. Dolan had no comment on the verdict or the award. Although...
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