New details on suit against Sparrow CEO

Published: Mar. 14, 2019 at 6:37 PM EDT
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UPDATE: This case has been dismissed.


The lawsuit filed by Stephanie Hale documents her version of the events leading up to the alleged assault by Sparrow CEO Emory Tibbs.

Sparrow placed him on paid administrative leave while they look into the bizarre story involving fake emails and an extortion plot.

That includes how her former boyfriend ended up screaming at E.W Tibbs and demanding cash from him in a hotel room.

Stephanie Hale said she met Tibbs in 2016 during an employee orientation at "Centra Health" in Virginia. She was hired in 2016 as a nurse to staff a substance abuse rehab facility operated by Centra.

Soon after she was hired, Hale said she received sexually suggestive emails from a man named "Ethan Toms" who claimed to be a UFC fighter.

The lawsuit said she responded dismissively hoping the emails would stop.

That's when Hale's then-boyfriend, Robert Peters, intervened thinking Hale was cheating on him.

Peters used Hale's phone and email to communicate with Ethan Toms in an attempt to identify him.

A co-worker of Hale also received emails from Ethan Toms. That associate eventually played a voicemail from him for Hale. Hale said she then realized Toms was really E.W. Tibbs, according to the lawsuit.

Peters then sent an e-mail telling Tibbs he knew it was him and not Ethan Toms. The lawsuit states Hale was falsely accused of drug use and harassed.

The lawsuit said that Hale had to take three random drug test which came back negative, and a supervisor lifted up her shirt to check for track marks.

She was fired from Centra on February 27, 2017.

That's when Peters set up the hotel rendezvous. He sent an e-mail from Hale's account arranging for Tibbs to pay Hale for sex on March 27th, 2017.

The lawsuit states Peters planned to get into the room with a spare key that Hale would leave for him at the lobby, confront Tibbs, and blackmail him.

Hale agreed to play along to end her boyfriend's harassment and distrust and to prove that Ethan Toms was Tibbs.

Hale claims she was alone in the room with Tibbs for about ten minutes. Tibbs immediately locked the door and began making alcoholic drinks, during which time he sexually assaulted her, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit claims that Peters had trouble finding the room at first, but when he did he screamed at Hale through the door while he tried to get his key-card to work.

"Open the door you---, open the --- door," you can hear Peters in a video filmed by his friend in the hotel room.

Hale let Peters in. And once he got in, Tibbs was locked in the bathroom.

"Right now you better come on out and talk to me, better come on out," said Peters.

Tibbs came out of the bathroom.

"I'm gonna be honest with you guys, I had no idea she had anybody with her," said Tibbs.

Tibbs had a handful of cash and tried giving it to Peters. The video shows the cash in his hand.

"It's going to cost you," Peters said repeatedly.

"Tell me what it's going to cost me?" said Tibbs.

"It's going to cost you," said Peters.

The lawsuit claims Tibbs threw the money on the ground and left. Hale stayed back in the room and Tibbs and Peters continued to argue outside in the parking lot, according to the lawsuit.

Stephanie Hale claims she had nothing to do with the extortion plot and that she didn't get any money out of it.

And her lawyer told us she only sued because Tibbs was hired at Sparrow.

The lawsuit said Centra Health gave Tibbs the option to resign immediately or be fired, and that Centra gave him glowing reviews when he quit.

Her lawsuit names Tibbs, Centra, and multiple "John and Jane Does" as defendants. She said they helped cover up Tibbs' conduct.

Sparrow told us Tibbs was thoroughly vetted and none of this came up during the hiring process.

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