Orange County cable tech claims he was fired for having legal gun in locked vehicle

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — An Orange County gun owner has accused the former Brighthouse cable company, now Spectrum, of firing him for having a gun in his locked vehicle.

Mario Toro, who has a Florida concealed carry license, said he was a cable installation technician with the company for nearly 10 years before he was fired in November, a federal lawsuit said.

“As a license concealed weapons holder, (Toro) regularly transported his legal firearm, within the locked compartment of his motor vehicle, to and from work,” the suit said.

Toro claims he never took the gun out of his vehicle “or exhibited said firearm in any manner” while on company property or while at any customer’s property, the lawsuit claimed.

On Nov. 4, he attended a meeting regarding a new health insurance plan for Brighthouse employees and afterward was asked if he’d brought the gun to work.

“(Toro) responded that his firearm was inside his vehicle and was locked,” the lawsuit said.

On Nov. 16, Toro said he was fired because he admitted to having the gun inside the vehicle.

Toro claims the cable company violated the Florida Preservation and Protection of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms in Motor Vehicles Act of 2008.

According to the act, an employer cannot prohibit an employee from legally having a firearm in their locked personal vehicle.

While Toro referred to it as "his vehicle" in the lawsuit, the filing did not specify if it was his personal vehicle or his company vehicle, if he was provided one.

In a response to the lawsuit, Brighthouse denied any wrongdoing, saying, “(Toro’s) alleged damages, if any, are attributable in whole or in part to his own conduct and not the actions or inactions of defendants or their affiliates, employees, agents or representatives.”

Brighthouse requested Toro’s lawsuit be dismissed.