Disability bias suit: Worker ridiculed, teddy bears beheaded

AP News
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Posted: Dec 07, 2016 3:53 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A former aide to a New York City Council member says the lawmaker and a senior member of his staff subjected him to cruel bullying that included decapitating the stuffed animals on his desk.

Michael Bistreich, who has Asperger syndrome, filed a $10 million lawsuit against Brooklyn City Councilman Vincent Gentile on Tuesday.

Bistreich says in the lawsuit that on one occasion, he was locked in a basement. On another, someone beheaded the stuffed animals on his desk. One bear's head was mounted on a small flagpole.

Bistreich was Gentile's legislative and budgetary director. He quit in June.

The Brooklyn politician didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. He told local newspapers he wouldn't comment.

The city Law Department says the complaint is under review.