Radical past costs council staffer his job
By Graham Kates
David Segal thought he was getting a second chance when Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez hired him in March 2011.
The 26-year-old was an unlikely candidate for a City Council job, since he had spent six months in federal prison and four months under house arrest for throwing a burning rag into a Parkchester Army Recruitment Center in 2005. The Federal Bureau of Investigation swarmed Manhattan College, where he was a student at the time, to search his dorm room after his arrest.
“I made it clear on the job application that I had a conviction” Mr. Segal said. “I made it clear what the conviction was and [Mr. Rodriguez] signed the job application.”
His second chance was revoked on April 27, after the New York Post ran a story about his past. He was fired that day.
He was then re-hired on May 3. And fired again five hours later.
“My understanding is that they talked to their legal staff and they declared to [Mr. Rodriguez] that it was probably illegal for him to fire me on that basis and so I was offered my job back,” Mr. Segal told The Riverdale Press on May 4. “I reported to work at 9 a.m. on Thursday, did some work writing a press release, did some research; about five hours after I showed up from work, the chief of staff handed me a letter saying I’m fired.”
Mr. Rodriguez’s former chief of staff, Angel Audiffred, referred The Press to the City Council press office, which did not return a request for comment.
It’s unclear what caused the change of heart while Mr. Segal plugged away on a press release on May 3, but it’s clear that not every City Council member wanted him around.
Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. took to Facebook to lambaste the initial re-hiring.
“just [sic] heard the council re-hired the guy who firebombed a US military facilty [sic] and called the NYPD “pigs”. what’s [sic] next, is MF Global going to re-hire john corzine?? [sic] This guy only apologized to ‘those who might not agree with my past.’ until [sic] he begs forgiveness from our soldiers and our cops and renounces violence, he should NOT be getting paid by taxpayers,” Mr. Vallone wrote on his Facebook page at 3 p.m. that day.