Assaults have consequences. An assault on two gay men in Philly caused the daughter of a police chief to go to jail. Now she and her father as well as the Bucks County District Attorney and two detectives who work for him who usually do the prosecuting, find themselves in the unusual position of being “prosecuted: but in a civil lawsuit. The three as well as the daughter of the police chief, the person who actually assaulted one or both of the gay men find themselves in yet another legal battle as a result of the assault.

It’s a Federal lawsuit, docketed as number 2:2016cv02040 in the Eastern District Federal Court at 6th and Market streets in Philadelphia. It seems to involve violations of the Civil Rights of Kathleen O’Donnell, 61, who was fired from her job after two Bucks County detectives who work for District Attorney David Heckler visited her at her place of employment. The detectives allegedly spoke to O’Donnell and to her employer after which, on the same day as the detectives visited O’Donnell, O”Donnell was fired.

O’Donnell was fired from Walker Parking Consultants in Wayne, which is not in Bucks County. Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler remains unapologetic about the incident, claiming that the blog “was perceived as potentially threatening and potentially inciting others” to harm the chief’s daughter.
“We would not have been looking into the matter unless it involved what we believed to be potentially incriminating behavior,” Heckler told Raw Story, “We certainly didn’t bully up on her because Chief Knott is a police officer and we were looking out for a buddy.”

O’Donnell is now suing Kathryn Knott who hit one or both of the gay men as well as Knott’s father, police chief Karl Knott, Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler and the two detectives, Mark Zielinski and Martin McDonough who apparently visited her while she was on the job. They are collectively and probably individually being sued in their official positions. O’Donnell wants $150,000 in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages according to the lawsuit.

This is a toughie because O’Donnell seems to have been using her employers computer to operate a website: “Knotty Is A Tramp”. While it’s clear that anyone can post whatever they want, there are certain things that can be a problem. Threats can be published or said but there are consequences that make it a bad idea to do it. In this case, it might be that O’Donnell was fired simply for using Walker Parking’s computer for personal business. If that’s the case the case would probably just disappear.

It could also be a “he said, -she said” thing where’s there’s no proof of what was said by the detectives.
OTOH, it could be O’Donnell’s civil rights were violated by the detectives but it was in O’Donnells best interest to back off and the detectives did her a favor by pointing out to her some of the consequences of her webpage.

We’ll have to wait to see what comes out of the civil lawsuit.

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