An attorney and police chief have been in an ongoing legal battle in connection to a mock Juneteenth party that was hosted last year, according to WXXI News. The incident went viral after the Black firefighter who was forced to attend complained publicly about the racist set-up. Now this incident has turned into a lawsuit filing fiasco.
Nate McMurray represented Jerrod Jones, former Rochester Ny. firefighter, in a $4 million lawsuit. Jones alleges his department captain Jeffrey Krywy urged him and his colleagues to attend a party at a mansion. The party was a parody Juneteenth celebration, featuring a cardboard cutout of Donald Trump, pan-African flags floating above KFC chicken buckets and pictures Democratic politicians on stakes in the yard. Jones retired from the department and Krywy was suspended upon the investigation.
However, McMurray alleges another party attendee who should have been disciplined was Irondequoit Police Chief Scott Peters, per WROC News. The chief filed a defamation suit against the attorney after being swept into all of this mess.
Read more from WXXI News:
Peters, a nearly 30-year veteran of the Rochester Police Department, filed his lawsuit in January, about a week and a half before he was sworn in as Irondequoit’s police chief.
In December, as news surfaced that the town planned to appoint Peters as the next police chief, McMurray sent an email to town attorney Megan Dorritie that accused Peters of attending what has been called a faux Juneteenth party hosted by socialites Mary Znidarsic-Nicosia and Nicholas Nicosia the previous July.
McMurray had filed a notice of claim, a precursor to a lawsuit, against the city of Rochester on behalf of Jerrod Jones, a Black firefighter who was made to attend the party while on duty by his supervisor.
In that email, McMurray also accused Peters’ wife, Amy Andrews, of calling him from her work phone in the federal court system and threatening to “destroy him” if he didn’t stop speaking about Peters. McMurray said he filed a complaint with the New York State Attorney General’s Office following the call.
Peters denied even being at the racist party yet confirmed his wife called up McMurray but to try and offer proof that he wasn’t there. However, McMurray filed a counterclaim against Peters, denying his claims that he launched a campaign to end his career. People work so much harder not to seem racist versus when they actually do something racist.
Meanwhile, there are no updates on the progress of Jones’ lawsuit against the fire department and the city. Hopefully, he’s living his best life.