Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Arlene on Tuesday ruled the New York Police Department (NYPD) is not allowed to fire nine year veteran of the force, 43-year-old police officer, Alexander Delito, for refusing to receive the mandatory coronavirus vaccine.
This is great news for Delito, who applied for a religious exemption and took the NYPD to court after they attempted to terminate him.
“The anti-shutdown” lawyer, attorney James Mermigis, says this ruling sets a precedent because this is the first such ruling in an NYPD officer’s case fighting a firing over the mandate.
“It’s a precedent-setting case. It’s the first of its kind,” Mermings said.
“The hollow and generic phrase ‘does not meet criteria’ cannot be rational because not a single item particular to [Deletto] was discussed and not a single reason for the decision was given,” Justice Arlene Bluth ruled.
“There is no indication that anybody even read [Deletto’s] arguments. It is the duty of the agency to explain why it made the decision,” the judge added.
Mermings told the New York Post, “His biggest concern when he wandered into my office in early August was how he was going to support his children.”
“He didn’t know what he was going to do, but under no circumstances was he going to betray his religious beliefs,” he added.
“He feels vindicated. A big sigh of relief,” he continued.
“My goal is to keep them employed. The last thing we need is to fire more cops when there is an acceleration of crime,” Mermings explained.
“These are people that were heroes during COVID that put their own safety at risk to help the city of New York and this is how the mayor treats them? It’s an absolute disgrace,” Mermings added.
“It was so thoroughly analyzed by the judge. In my opinion, it’s appeal-proof,” he said.