FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Eric Sanders, Esq., of The Sanders Firm, P.C., announces the filing of a federal civil rights lawsuit against the City of New York, Lieutenant Filastin Srour, Lieutenant Tanya S. Bennett, Lieutenant Julio E. Calle, Sergeants Wilson O. Ramos, Daniel M. Miller, Alfred J. Gallicchio and Asa G. Barnes, Police Officers Ryan A. Marrero, Peter G. Montalbano, Detective Third Grade Michael J. Ganz, Police Officer Jimmy D. Gutierres and FDNY Firefighter Evan R. Santana
New York, June 15, 2021 – Former Police Officer Maria Mendez alleges that she was assigned to the 32nd Precinct. According to the lawsuit, Mrs. Mendez alleges that from Late 2014 through January 28, 2019, while on and off duty, Defendants’ RYAN A. MARRERO; MICHAEL J. GANZ; JIMMY D. GUTIERRES and EVAN R. SANTANA forced her to ingest copious amounts of opioids, Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) aka ecstasy or molly and alcohol, physically assault and menace her, then forcibly rape and sodomize her.
Throughout this time period, Mrs. Mendez alleges that she sustained numerous contusions and lacerations about her body including but not limited to her head, physical deformities to her vagina and anus requiring surgical repair, according to the lawsuit.
Mrs. Mendez alleges to have suffered ‘egregious’ emotional distress.
According to the lawsuit, Defendants’ THE CITY OF NEW YORK; FILASTIN SROUR; JULIO E. CALLE; TANYA S. BENNETT; WILSON O. RAMOS; DANIEL M. MILLER; ALFRED J. GALLICCHIO; ASA G. BARNES and others were aware that Mrs. Mendez was subjected to ‘incalculable’ acts of sexual violence and mental abuse on and off duty but, failed to intervene.
Mrs. Mendez alleges that feeling that she had no other viable avenue of support, on January 28, 2019, she resigned from the Police Department City of New York leaving a lucrative career with promotional opportunities, medical and retirement benefits.
In March 2019, Mrs. Mendez attempted suicide and had to be admitted to an area hospital in response to the sexual violence and mental abuse she endured as a police officer at the hands of Defendants’ THE CITY OF NEW YORK; FILASTIN SROUR; JULIO E. CALLE; TANYA S. BENNETT; WILSON O. RAMOS; DANIEL M. MILLER; ALFRED J. GALLICCHIO; ASA G. BARNES; RYAN A. MARRERO; PETER G. MONTALBANO; RISEL V. MARTINEZ; MICHAEL J. GANZ; JIMMY D. GUTIERRES; and EVAN R. SANTANA and others, according to the lawsuit.
According to the lawsuit, in January 2020, Mrs. Mendez received a medical diagnosis regarding her persistent vaginal and anal pain and incontinence.
On March 19, 2020, Mrs. Mendez she filed an application for social security benefits with the Social Security Administration. In that application, Mrs. Mendez alleges that all of her claims related to the sexual violence and mental abuse she endured as a police officer at the hands of Defendants’ THE CITY OF NEW YORK; FILASTIN SROUR; JULIO E. CALLE; TANYA S. BENNETT; WILSON O. RAMOS; DANIEL M. MILLER; ALFRED J. GALLICCHIO; ASA G. BARNES; RYAN A. MARRERO; PETER G. MONTALBANO; RISEL V. MARTINEZ; MICHAEL J. GANZ; JIMMY D. GUTIERRES; and EVAN R. SANTANA and others.
On March 2, 2021, Mrs. Mendez had her bladder, vagina and anus surgically repaired due to the sexual assaults of Defendants’ RYAN A. MARRERO; MICHAEL J. GANZ; JIMMY D. GUTIERRES; and EVAN R. SANTANA, according to the lawsuit.
On March 26, 2012, Mrs. Mendez received a Fully Favorable Decision. The Agency determined among other things that:
The claimant has the following severe impairments: labral tear and impingement syndrome of the left shoulder, degenerative disc disease of the lumbar spine and radiculopathy per EMG, anxiety disorder, depressive disorder, and posttraumatic stress disorder, hereinafter “PTSD” (20 CFR 404.1520(c).
The claimant has moderate limitations in her ability to interact with the public, be aware of hazards, and set goals. She has marked limitations in her ability to travel to unfamiliar places and extreme limitations in her ability to sustain a work routine and tolerate stress. The claimant “sustained significant trauma and abuse” and has severe symptoms consistent with PTSD that include anxiety, hypervigilance, mistrust of others, flashbacks, and intrusive memories.
The undersigned finds that Ms. Markouizos’s opinion is highly persuasive, as it is supported by her treatment notes and consistent with the remaining medical evidence. The claimant’s treatment records from various providers document her reports of sexual and physical abuse. She pursued care with her gynecologist for incontinence and vaginal pain that resulted from injuries sustained during her sexual abuse. The claimant was ultimately recommended for vaginal reconstruction. The claimant’s treatment records also document her to begin mental health treatment in July of 2019. Her diagnosed impairments include PTSD, anxiety disorder, and depressive disorder. The claimant’s treatment notes accredit her reported symptoms to years of sexual and physical abuse that occurred during her employment as a police office. Exhibits SF and 7F/2. The claimant’s ongoing mental health symptoms and minimal improvement despite her years of treatment support.
“Frankly, I think that the Manhattan District Attorney and the department dropped the ball here. Now, Mrs. Mendez seeks redress through the federal court to hold her abusers accountable,” said lawyer Eric Sanders.
Eric Sanders, Esq., of The Sanders Firm, P.C., filed a federal civil rights lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, Docket No.: 21 cv 5294, on June 15, 2021.
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.
Eric Sanders, Esq.
President and Owner, The Sanders Firm, P.C.
Business Phone: 212-652-2782