The lawsuit brought by a police officer who said his free speech rights were violated when he blew the whistle on alleged quotas in the NYPD was dismissed yesterday, April 12, in federal court.
Officer Craig Matthews of the 42nd Precinct in the Bronx had claimed that after he spoke out about quotas he said were required for arrests, tickets and traffic stops, the department retaliated against him by, for example, cutting his overtime. He claimed such actions were a violation of his First Amendment right to free speech.
But Judge Barbara Jones of the U.S. Court for the Southern District of New York says otherwise. She dismissed the suit after determining that because Matthews spoke about job-related concerns as a public employee, rather than as a private citizen, his speech was not protected by the First Amendment.
The city's Law Office praised the decision in a brief statement attributed to Senior Counsel William Fraenkel.
"The judge made a well-reasoned decision, and we are pleased the court dismissed the lawsuit," Fraenkel said.
— Peter C. Mastrosimone