MIAMI – A Miami code compliance officer who accused a commissioner of pushing her on the job has now been fired for insubordination.
Suzann Nicholson filed a workman’s comp claim for injuries after she says she was pushed by Commissioner Alex Diaz de la Portilla when she encountered him at an illegal party in February and was told by her supervisors to cover it up.
The manager’s letter says it is because she didn’t show up to give her official statement Monday.
The alleged altercation isn’t apparent on police video that was made public. Code records also don’t document what Nicholson alleged.
Nicholson later sued the commissioner for libel after he accused her of lying.
We’ve since learned Nicholson filed a motion for a protective court order against Diaz de la Portilla and the city last week.
Below is a statement from Miami City Manager Art Noriega that was released Wednesday:
“On February 21, an alleged incident occurred at an illegal party in Allapattah involving Ms. Nicholson. Since then, the media has reported several versions of the events of that night and identified Ms. Nicholson as the source of their information. In at least one article the media reported that Ms. Nicholson alleged to have been a victim of an assault and that she was instructed by her supervisor to destroy documents connected to her official duties that night.
“The City has a zero-tolerance policy for workplace violence, and even less tolerance for misconduct by its employees. Given the allegations, the City was compelled, and within its rights as a government employer, to open an administrative investigation into her allegations in order to maintain continuity of service and the highest level of ethical standards in the workplace.
“As part of that investigation, Ms. Nicholson was obligated to give an ‘official’ statement to City investigators to assist with the investigation into her claims, but she unreasonably refused to do so. As a result of the employee’s refusal to cooperate with the administrative investigation into the serious claims that she made of misconduct while in the course and scope of her official duties, the City has terminated the employee for insubordination, effective immediately.”