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Former Pleasanton PD officer sues city, alleges wrongful termination after attending 'Stop the Steal' rally

Original post made on Feb 15, 2023

A former Pleasanton police officer has filed a federal lawsuit against city and police officials for allegedly firing him after finding out he attended a 'Stop the Steal' rally in Sacramento on Jan. 6, 2021.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, February 13, 2023, 11:22 PM

Comments (1)

Posted by Malcolm Hex
a resident of San Ramon
on Feb 15, 2023 at 1:38 am

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

This case will be a true test of former Officer McNeff’s 1st amendment rights.

The case is a workplace investigation that was obviously investigated by Internal Affairs. What I want to know is what McNeff was charged with. Was he in violation of PPD Policy and/or Merit System Rules? The catchall of course in any Internal Affairs investigations is the charge of: Conduct unbecoming of a police officer. But was he?

I believe the city of Pleasanton could get taken to the cleaners over this and here’s why. The city of Pleasanton is going to have to do one of two things, or both: pay McNeff a hefty sum of money and/or reinstate him. If I’m McNeff’s attorney, here’s what I would nail the City of Pleasanton with.

Every year, during gay pride celebrations, many police departments from across the U.S. change their shoulder patches on their uniforms to symbolize gay pride. However, many police officers refuse to wear the temporary patch because they believe the gay pride celebration is political. And those officers have every right to refuse. Just as those other officers have the right - per department policy - to wear gay themed police shoulder patches.

Granted, we don’t know what kinds of postings or pictures social media displays about McNeff. And I for one don’t know anything about the Stop the Steal rally. If McNeff’s lawyers can show that the rally the plaintiff attended did not align with any kind of hate group, the City of Pleasanton is going to have a very bad day in court.

The harm showed in the case will be:

1. Reputation
2. Monetary
3. Employment
4. Civil Rights

And remember, according to this article, McNeff had five years on with the department and an exemplary record.

This case is headed to a costly jury trial. Oh, and if McNeff wins on violations to his 1st Amendment rights, Pleasanton will be on the hook for lawyer fees and court costs.

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