FDNY 'Bad Lieutenant' Sued Over Twitter Post
BROOKLYN, N.Y. (CN) - The paramedic whose offensive Internet posts made a splash in the tabloids now faces a lawsuit over one of his alleged Photoshop creations.
The New York Post and other tabloids skewered Timothy Dluhos in March 2013 when they caught wind of racist posts on a Twitter account he named "Bad Lieutenant."
At the time, Dluhos was a lieutenant with the New York City Fire Department's Emergency Medical Services.
In addition to ranting about "chinks" and "coloreds," Dluhos reportedly took grisly photos of hospital patients and used Photoshop to scribble the occasional insult on some of those images.
Teena Gamzon says in a new complaint that she is the woman pictured in a Dluhos original that has the words "Wide Load" on the back of her wheelchair.
She says a medical condition keeps her confined to a wheelchair "most of the time."
Now the image Dluhos posted to Twitter can be found on the websites of The New York Post, Daily Mail UK, Huffington Post, Gothamist and other media outlets that reported on his account, according to the complaint.
She seeks punitive damages from Dluhos and the city, alleging negligence and emotional distress.
The city's negligence "was the proximate cause of the ongoing and continuous publication of photographs ridiculing sick and infirmed persons to whom the New York City Fire Department Emergency Medical Services responded to as well as the public in general, including the plaintiff, Teena Gamzon," according to the complaint.
Gamzon says publication of the photos caused her mental anguish and continuous pain, leaving her "confined to a bed and home for a period of time."
"Timothy Dluhos with malice, defamation, invasion of privacy, intentional infliction of emotional distress did cause to be published such photographs, which, upon information and belief, has been viewed by millions of individuals and has subjected the claimant to ridicule, emotional and mental distress, and other personal injuries, the extent of which is unknown at this time," the complaint adds.
New York City Fire Department spokesman Frank Dwyer confirmed that Dluhos resigned after the department suspended him.
The plaintiff's husband, Lester Gamzon, also seeks damages.
They are represented by Robert Goldberg.