From the New York Times: New York City Settles Lawsuit by Detective Called a ‘Rat’ – NYTimes.com:
A former Brooklyn police detective who claimed his career was ruined after he was labeled a “rat” by other detectives in his squad will receive a $280,000 settlement from New York City.
The lawsuit by the former detective, James E. Griffin, offered a look at the retaliation that police officers can face for reporting allegations of misconduct to the Internal Affairs Bureau. In his case, Mr. Griffin said he had found the word “rat” scrawled on his locker and that other detectives in the 83rd Precinct’s detective squad in Bushwick refused to work with him. Although he switched units a couple of times, the reputation followed him; he was ostracized in each new unit, he claimed.
The retaliation began, Mr. Griffin claimed, after he called Internal Affairs in 2005 about a fellow officer who, he believed, was trying to frame him in an internal inquiry into a homicide case that his squad had mishandled.
He said he was forced to retire in 2009, his career in shambles. In a lawsuit filed in Federal District Court in Brooklyn in 2010, he accused the Police Department of violating his First Amendment rights, among others; the case was settled last week.