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Koehler & Isaacs Attorney Mercedes Maldonado Quoted in the Daily News

Former Rikers Island correction officer fighting to get job back after allegedly being shot in face by jail boss husband, then fired

BY CHELSIA ROSE MARCIUS , RICH SCHAPIRO 
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
 
Friday, April 24, 2015, 2:30 PM

SUSAN WATTS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Janine Howard, here with Correction Officers' Benevolent Association head Norman Seabrook, is suing the Correction Department to get her job back.

First she was shot in the face — allegedly by her jail boss husband. Then she was fired from her job as a Rikers Island correction officer.
Now Janine Howard, 40, is fighting to get back on the Correction Department payroll.
“I feel victimized,” the Long Island mother said Friday in her first interview. “I feel my safety, security can just be taken from me at any time.”
Howard’s nightmarish ordeal began on Dec. 2013 when she was shot by Rikers Island Capt. Brian Martin, 37, during an argument inside their Roosevelt home, prosecutors say.
Martin has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder charges.
The shooting left Howard with shattered bones in her face and a bullet fragment in her neck.

SUSAN WATTS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Howard was shot in the face by husband and jail boss Brian Martin, and then just a year later was fired with no reason being given.


But what came afterward was almost as painful, Howard says.
A Rikers Island supervisor showed up at her house without warning on Dec. 23, 2014 — and told her she was being fired. No reason was given, Howard said.
At the time, Howard was out sick and on restrictive hours.
“I had a small child,” added Howard who has a five-year-old daughter from a prior relationship. “I thought it was a good career. The job is difficult but I thought I could do it.”
Howard is suing the Correction Department to get her job back — an action that was initiated by Correction Officers' Benevolent Association head Norman Seabrook.

SUSAN WATTS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Howard, 40, said that she "felt victimized" by the Correction Department, as they let her go without ever giving her a reason.

"I feel my safety, security can just be taken from me at any time."

“Miss Howard is a victim of a horrendous crime,” said her lawyer Mercedes Maldonado.
“Norman Seabrook and the Correction Officers Benevolent Association executive board instructed me to bring this litigation, get her job back, and that's what we intend to do.”
Seabrook said Howard has been victimized twice.
“For this man to think that he can abuse her, attempt to murder her ... is unacceptable,” Seabrook added.
“For the Department of Correction to turn around and terminate her services the day after she was supposed to be off probation sends a very clear message that they don’t seem to have feelings of caring about their employees.”
The Correction Department did not immediately return a request for comment.


Koehler & Isaacs LLP is a full service law firm located in New York, New York and Newark, New Jersey. We offer our clients a range of legal services throughout New York including Westchester, Ulster, Rockland, Dutchess, and Nassau Counties.



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