An attorney and a area police chief are locked in dueling complaints ensuing from an ongoing feud joined to an alleged Juneteenth parody social gathering that produced international headlines past yr.
Nate McMurray, a Buffalo-dependent lawyer, submitted a counterclaim Tuesday in opposition to Irondequoit Law enforcement Chief Scott Peters, who experienced beforehand submitted a defamation accommodate in opposition to McMurray.
Peters claimed McMurray attempted to impede the city from choosing him as main late very last year by spreading a rumor, which Peters says is baseless, that he attended a racist pool occasion very last July.
McMurray, meanwhile, promises Peters’ spouse experienced threatened him to remain silent, and cast Peters’ lawsuit as an intimidation tactic.
“The complaint is intended to silence a critic who has made assertions in the course
of general public debate and in line with the obligation of an lawyer to appear forward, devoid of worry, to handle governmental improprieties,” Murray’s grievance reads.
Peters, a just about 30-yr veteran of the Rochester Police Department, filed his lawsuit in January, about a 7 days and a half right before he was sworn in as Irondequoit’s police chief.
In December, as information surfaced that the city prepared to appoint Peters as the future police chief, McMurray despatched an email to city attorney Megan Dorritie that accused Peters of attending what has been known as a fake Juneteenth social gathering hosted by socialites Mary Znidarsic-Nicosia and Nicholas Nicosia the past July.
McMurray had submitted a detect of assert, a precursor to a lawsuit, towards the town of Rochester on behalf of Jerrod Jones, a Black firefighter who was created to attend the occasion whilst on obligation by his supervisor.
In that e mail, McMurray also accused Peters’ spouse, Amy Andrews, of contacting him from her function cellphone in the federal court method and threatening to “destroy him” if he didn’t stop talking about Peters. McMurray explained he submitted a criticism with the New York State Legal professional General’s Office adhering to the call.
“As a former town supervisor myself, I would do anything in my power to quit the selecting of these a man or woman if I was knowledgeable of his habits, specially if I understood these types of actions could pretty nicely come to be the part of a extremely general public, pending courtroom situation,” the e mail reads. “You are now built mindful. You should make your purchasers on the Town Board informed.”
In his lawsuit, Peters denied attending the get together. He also accused McMurray of trying to defame him on behalf of a person of his other clients, Town Board member Patrina Freeman, who at the time was litigating a discrimination accommodate versus the town. That scenario was dismissed in January.
McMurray, in a cell phone call Tuesday, stood by his statements.
“I will keep on to vigorously defend my clients,” McMurray reported. “I would question Ms. Andrews why she identified as me in the to start with place. When she called me, I experienced no concept who she was.”
A information remaining for Peters’ attorney, Jessica Gulla, in search of comment was not right away returned.
Peters’ criticism acknowledged that Andrews did call McMurray but denied that she had threatened him. As an alternative, the lawsuit asserted, she termed McMurray to supply him proof that Peters was not at the get together. McMurray later on posted on Twitter about the mobile phone contact.
Peters is in search of both punitive damages and compensation for defamation in the lawsuit.
In his counterclaim, McMurray’s law firm Laine Armstrong denied most of the promises made by Peters and questioned that his lawsuit be dismissed, and McMurray be awarded damages and legal professional charges.
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