Officer Frank Palestro, the latest cop to call foul on corruption in the NYPD, has gotten serious flak from his fellow police and the union, though he maintains he was just doing his duty. The union delegate and nine-year police veteran was outed after secretly reporting Lt. Susana Seda for behavior such as telling cops to write summonses for traffic violations they didn't witness, refusing to take complaints and tampering with a gun at a crime scene. Since then, he's been transferred so he won't have to deal with the wrath of his peers in the precinct. "I was the [Patrolmen's Benevolent Association] delegate, and now I'm labeled a rat for doing what I was supposed to do," said Palestro. "This will stay with me for the rest of my career."
According to Palestro, union reps rarely report the infractions of their fellow officers. "I wrestled with it for a while because I'm a delegate and we don't do things like this," he told the Daily News. In the end he made three anonymous phone calls reporting corruption within his precinct, but the log of his calls somehow made its way into the vents of his locker at the stationhouse! "[Seda] told everybody I was a 'f------ rat,'" he said, adding that the union has also reprimanded him. So far no action has been taken against the accused lieutenant.
Palestro's allegations follow a study that revealed widespread and deeply ingrained corruption regarding how the NYPD's crime statistics are obtained, as well as whistleblowing by several other members of the force.