Former police officer Erica Rivera is filing a $5 million lawsuit against the NYPD on claims that she was illegally fired from the department.
Rivera was fired from the NYPD in 2012 when department officials discovered she’d had intimate relationships with men with criminal backgrounds, the New York Daily News reports.
Rivera’s troubles started when she posted an old picture of her with a friend to Instagram. The friend pictured with her was a man named Danny Perez.
Perez had no criminal history at the time the photo was taken, but later spent time in prison for a non-fatal stabbing. Nevertheless, a woman came into Rivera’s police station after the photo was posted and complained.
Following the complaint, Rivera’s superiors questioned her extensively about her relationship with Perez. They asked her if she still saw him and if she’d ever had sex with him.
Rivera declined to answer their question about a possible past sexual relationship. A month later, she was asked the same question again and officially denied ever having sex with Perez.
Several months later, Rivera was again questioned for associating with a man with a criminal past. Her new interest was George Mann, a New York resident who’d been arrested in the past for failing to pay child support.
Superiors asked Rivera if she’d been having sex with the man. Rivera admitted she had but said she’d been seeing him for only three months and had no clue about his criminal past.
NYPD officials say Rivera was fired for violating a department policy that forbids officers from associating with criminals.
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