Court Sides With Soldier Who Sued Ala. Agency

ATLANTA (AP) -- A federal appeals court has upheld a judge's ruling that an Alabama agency broke the law when it failed to promptly rehire a soldier after he returned from Iraq.

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday that a judge didn't err in finding that the Alabama Department of Mental Health violated federal law when it did not immediately rehire Roy Hamilton when he returned home from duty in April 2005.

Hamilton was a medical assistant at Tarwater Developmental Center in Wetumpka when his National Guard unit was deployed to Iraq in January 2004. The mental health department closed Tarwater while Hamilton was deployed.

He claims when he returned the department told him it had no record of his employment. He applied for openings until he was rehired in 2007.

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