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The Law Offices of Daniel Feder: San Francisco Police Department Sued by Muslim Police Officer for Race Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation

August 30, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug 29, 2018--The Law Offices of Daniel Feder:

A former police officer of the San Francisco Police Department sued the City of San Francisco today (San Francisco Superior Court #CGC-18-569287, HABIB v. CITY AND COUNTY OF SAN FRANCISCO AND SAN FRANCISCO POLICE DEPARTMENT). Plaintiff Mohammad Habib alleges that the SFPD subjected him to extreme harassment, unfair performance criticisms and wrongful termination for making complaints to his superior officers, the Police Department’s EEO Department, and to top brass in the SFPD about harassment and discrimination against him based on his national origin (Afghan) and his religion (Muslim). The harassment experienced by the Plaintiff included racial taunts and slurs against Muslims by fellow officers and superior officers, promotion of White Nationalism by his fellow officers, and the posting of written warnings on his station-room locker stating, “Isis Go Back,” and “tick, tick.”

Plaintiff Mohammad Habib’s nationality is Afghani. A devout Muslim, Habib attended the San Francisco Police Academy from June of 2016 through Feb. 17, 2017. Habib received excellent marks and reviews from his supervising officers during his training.

Habib alleges that beginning in June of 2017, the SFPD subjected him to a barrage of harassing comments, conduct, and other communications by his supervisors and co-officers at SFPD’s Central Station in North Beach based on his race, religion and national origin. The harassment went so far as to involve the posting of racist and xenophobic graffiti on his locker twice: a drawing of an Isis flag with the statement “Isis go back” and other slurs: “tick, tick” scrawled on the outside of Habib’s locker at the Central Station. Other comments included taunts to Habib about him carrying bombs, using trip wires and references to Habib being an associate of Muslim terrorist organizations, and threats to kill the Plaintiff’s family because of their religion.

Habib alleges that beginning in early November of 2017, he made numerous complaints about the harassment, discrimination, and intimidation occurring at the Central Station. Immediately after Habib complained to management, his supervisors launched a campaign of intimidation and retaliation against him. His locker at the Central Station was torn out in the presence of several officers. He began getting calls immediately after making his complaints from his superior officers in which they threatened him. He received a call from his superior officer from a blocked number stating: “Hey, it’s your favorite sergeant. What’s going on? I’m worried about you. I need you to come in because I want to protect you.”

Several days after Habib complained to Internal Affairs on November 8 and 9, 2017, the SFPD transferred the Plaintiff to the Richmond Station, where he was required to work shifts with many of the officers who had harassed him at the Central Station. At the Richmond Station, Habib was referred to by his fellow officers as a “rat.”

On January 11, 2018, the Plaintiff made a written complaint of discrimination and harassment with the City and County of San Francisco Human Resources Department. In early February of 2018, Habib injured his knee at work. As a result of his injuries, Habib took a medical leave for about a month and a half. Habib’s doctors returned him to work full duty without any work restrictions. However, the SFPD refused to allow Habib to perform his job duties at the Richmond Station. Instead, even though Habib was fully able to perform his job as a police officer working in the field, the SFPD forced him to work performing clerical duties at 850 Bryant Street.

In February of 2018, the SFPD asked Habib to submit to a hand-writing analysis so that the Department could rule him out as a suspect in writing “ISIS go back” on his locker. No other employees of the SFPD were asked to submit handwriting samples. After being asked to provide a handwriting analysis, Habib filed a complaint with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing.

On March 19, 2018, Habib received a letter from the Internal Affairs Division informing him that he was “under investigation” and that he was required to report to Police Headquarters for an interview on April 4, 2018. After the SFPD informed Habib that he was under investigation, he contacted the media anonymously to alert the public about the discrimination, harassment and retaliation he was experiencing. After Habib spoke with the media, including television interviews in which his identity was hidden, a police lieutenant and two sergeants arrived in squad cars at Habib’s girlfriend’s house in San Francisco. The officers delivered a letter to him from the Chief of Police, William Scott, warning Habib about negative consequences to him that could result from him speaking with the media. When the officers delivered the letter from Chief of Police Scott to Habib, the two sergeants present were allegedly standing close to Habib in full tactical positions with their hands placed on their firearms.

On May 8, 2018, William Scott, Chief of Police, signed a notice of release from probationary employment. The letter informs Habib that effective immediately upon service, he was being terminated. The basis for the release from probationary employment alleges that the Plaintiff failed to provide truthful information in his application for employment with the Department. The SFPD had been authorized by Habib to conduct a full background search in connection with his employment application, which Habib alleges the SFPD performed before hiring. Habib denies providing any false information. Habib’s civil complaint alleges that to intimidate Habib with a show of force, the termination letter was delivered to Habib at his house in Pleasanton by a total of seven officers, four officers from SFPD and three officers from Pleasanton. Several fully marked squad cars were used to make the delivery.

About The Law Offices of Daniel Feder

The Law Offices of Daniel Feder specializes in representing employees in discrimination, harassment, and class-action litigation.

View source version on businesswire.com:https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180829005829/en/

CONTACT: The Law Offices of Daniel Feder

Daniel Feder, 415-391-9476




SOURCE: The Law Offices of Daniel Feder

Copyright Business Wire 2018.

PUB: 08/29/2018 09:35 PM/DISC: 08/29/2018 09:35 PM


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