Home Legal Issues Town to pay $21,000 in subpoenaed e-mails case

Town to pay $21,000 in subpoenaed e-mails case

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An upstate town will pay 21-thousand dollars to a former volunteer who sued after criminal subpoenas were used to identify him as one author of anonymous e-mails criticizing the town’s emergency services department.

William Gardner says he accepted the settlement from the town of Colonie after talking it over with his wife.

The 53-year-old was dismissed last year as part-time emergency medical technician by the suburban Albany town.

Colonie Supervisor Mary Brizzell declined to comment, saying the litigation is ongoing.

The Albany Times Union reports that Hugh Skerker, a full-time paramedic who was suspended after he was identified as an e-mail author, rejected a Colonie offer to settle.

Their federal lawsuit claimed violations of their rights to free speech and due process.

A police investigator obtained the men’s names from Time Warner Cable/Road Runner through subpoenas citing “a certain criminal matter.” No crime was alleged.

A town attorney said officials were entitled to know who sent the anonymous e-mails to Brizzell.

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