A former partner at K&L Gates in Manhattan wrote thousands of harassing and threatening texts to the firm’s attorneys over a long period, frequently including racist and antisemitic remarks. Moreover, Willie Dennis brutally abused the families of former coworkers.
Dennis was found guilty on three charges of online stalking and received a two-year prison sentence.
Although the prosecution had requested a sentence of four and a half years, Dennis’ attorney, David Cohen, highlighted in a court document that his client had expressed regret for his acts.
Dennis started making threats in 2018, and they got worse after he was fired in 2019.
Another victim slept with a loaded gun beside his bed, while one victim relocated out of state to avoid him. Dennis instructed some victims to “sleep with one eye open,” including one.
Dennis, a black man, filed a lawsuit against the law firm in 2020, stating that his termination was caused by his highlighting issues with purported racial and gender biases.
K&L Gates disputes this assertion. That lawsuit was suspended due to the criminal case.
The U.S. The harassment was “relentless,” according to attorney Damian Williams, and “the sentence handed today assures that Dennis’s victims will never longer needlessly endure his attacks,” he added.
With 1,698 people, K&L Gates was the 13th-largest law firm in the nation in 2022. It ranks 50th in the world for gross revenue at $1 billion.