A Pennsylvania blogger, who wrote about a convicted gay-bashing cop’s daughter, is suing the father and daughter saying they got her fired from her day job by sending district attorney detectives to her place of work to harass her.
According to Philly.com, Kathleen O’Donnell, 61, is suing Kathryn Knott, her father Karl Knott (a former police chief in Bucks County), Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler and the two detectives for $5 million.
A jury in December found Kathryn Knott, of Southampton, Pennsylvania, guilty of misdemeanor charges of simple assault, conspiracy and two counts of reckless endangerment in the Sept. 11, 2014 beating of a gay couple. She received a ten month jail term.
O’Donnell, who worked at a Walker Parking Consultants in Buck County, maintained a “parody account” blog she called “Knotty is a Tramp,” which she created on Sept. 26, 2014 to document the travails of the cop’s daughter after she gained national attention for the street attack.
According to O’Donnell’s suit, she states that Knott contacted her police chief father about the blog and that he called in a favor from the Bucks County DA’s office to put a stop to it.
In her suit, O’Donnell states that detectives Martin McDonough and Mark Zielinski came to her place of work and threatened her, saying that if she continued writing under “Knotty is a Tramp” that “she would be arrested for ‘fraudulently impersonating Ms. Knott.’” Despite agreeing to stop her online postings, O’Donnell says she was fired from her job the next day “as a direct result of the visit” by the detectives.
According to O’Donnell the two detectives spoke with her boss before meeting with her.
District Attorney Heckler defended his office’s actions, saying his detectives were concerned about the blog because it “was perceived as potentially threatening and potentially inciting others” to do harm to Knott.
“We would not have been looking into the matter unless it involved what we believed to be potentially incriminating behavior,” he said, before adding, “We certainly didn’t bully up on her because Chief Knott is a police officer and we were looking out for a buddy.”
O’Donnell’s suits asks for $150,000 in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages, contending she has suffered monetary losses as well as emotional pain and damage to her reputation.