For Immediate Release
NYPD Suspension Triggered By Fake News ‘Clickbait’ Story Published In the New York Daily News Based On Unauthorized Release and Publication of Stolen Personal Videos
New York, NY, July 5, 2017 – A $100 Million Dollar Notice of Claim filed against the City of New York alleges Police Officer Delinda Giraldo suffered mental anguish, pain, and suffering when the NYPD wrongfully suspended her without pay based on a fake news story.
Giraldo, 29, is a 4-year veteran of the NYPD.
Sanders alleges in the Notice of Claim filed with the New York City Comptroller’s Office on July 5, Police Commissioner James P. O’Neill, Deputy Commissioner of Internal Affairs Joseph J. Reznick along with other NYPD personnel violated Giraldo’s Civil Rights by forcing her under threat of suspension to submit hair and urine samples for a drug test. After the hair and urine sample seizures under the observation of several NYPD personnel, Giraldo was immediately suspended.
Giraldo alleges that she is the victim of domestic violence and the Department failed to follow paragraph (c) of subdivision 4 of Section 140.10 of the Criminal Procedure Law (Primary Physical Aggressor), the Department’s repeated suspensions, modifications and drug testing for cause are violative of federal and state human rights laws particularly New York City Administrative Code § 8-107.1 (3) . See Matter of Reynolds v. Fraser.
Sanders said that police investigators’ cited the published story in the New York Daily News as ‘cause’ or justification for the drug test and suspension.
The New York Daily News story unfairly portrayed Giraldo – an alleged Domestic Violence survivor as a racist who violated department policy based on the unauthorized release and publication of stolen personal videos, Sanders said.
“The problem is that the personal videos were stolen, illegally released and published throughout the world without Ms. Giraldo’s consent,” Sanders said.” “These are private videos that are more than ten-years-old.”
Sanders said an 18-year old Giraldo, created these personal videos while enlisted with the United States Air Force and not employed with the NYPD.
“The law is very clear that Ms. Giraldo cannot, nor any other NYPD officer, be disciplined for alleged inappropriate conduct before they joined the force,” Sanders said. In Borges v. McGuire, a 1985 case, an intermediate Appeals Court ruled the NYPD does not have jurisdiction over an employee’s pre-employment conduct. In other words, the NYPD cannot discipline an employee for alleged inappropriate pre-employment conduct in the past when not employed with the agency.
Sanders said that Police Commissioner James P. O’Neill, Deputy Commissioner of Internal Affairs Joseph J. Reznick along with other NYPD personnel reacted prematurely suspending Giraldo based on the New York Daily News reporting.
New York Daily News Fake News ‘Clickbait’ Story
“Frankly, the story would have been totally different if the New York Daily News simply reported the truth,” Sanders said. The New York Daily News missed a great opportunity to educate the public about domestic violence and in the age of social media, the challenges alleged victims face seeking justice. Unfortunately, domestic violence is a recurring problem within the NYPD and a threat to the public safety. The New York Daily News could have further educated the public discussing the unique challenges of handling domestic violence within the law enforcement community. The New York Daily News chose to do otherwise,” says Sanders.
Prior to the New York Daily News publishing its initial story about Giraldo, the reporters’ either failed to investigate the origins and disclosures of the personal videos or recklessly disregarded the origins and disclosures, says Sanders. Prior to the New York Daily News publishing an update, Giraldo interviewed with the New York Daily News reporters. During the interview, Giraldo clearly told the reporter, the personal videos published by the New York Daily News were stolen from her by alleged batterer NYPD Police Officer Michael Martinez, released without her authorization and posted to Instagram and Twitter. Ms. Giraldo told them, prior to the unauthorized releases Martinez allegedly threatened to release these and other compromising personal videos if she did not drop the criminal charges filed against him. There are criminal charges pending against Martinez in Bronx, New York and Orange Counties. Prior to the release, Ms. Giraldo reported Martinez’s threats to the NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau. The 10-year old personal videos were created while she was enlisted with the United States Air Force and not employed with the NYPD.
Sanders said “The New York Daily News reporters chose to ignore the truth, misleading the reader to conclude Ms. Giraldo is yet another racist NYPD police officer. The headline and the tone of the stories were designed to increase readership, generate more clicks aka ‘clickbait’ thereby driving advertising revenue for the New York Daily News at Ms. Giraldo’s expense.”
“We are talking about a person who survived a difficult upbringing and pulled herself up by the bootstraps to help others,” Sanders said.
“Ms. Giraldo understands the important role journalists’ perform for society, but this story was simply a vicious and malicious fake news hit job, says Sanders.
ABOUT THE SANDERS FIRM, P.C.
The Sanders Firm, P.C. offers those in the New York City area legal services related and connected to civil rights, civil service rights, criminal law and discrimination. We firmly believe in everyone’s individual rights that are described and guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States of America. We understand that our freedoms and liberties are sacrosanct and that they have been won in many and various hard-fought battles. We are committed in every way to protecting your civil rights. The Sanders Firm, P.C. is your voice for justice!
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