Jersey Shore Star Angelina Pivarnick Suing FDNY Supervisor for Allegedly Sexually Harassing Her
Angelina Pivarnick, one of the original castmates of Jersey Shore who went on to pursue a career as a Staten Island EMT, has filed a federal lawsuit against her FDNY supervisor after she claims he incessantly sexually harassed her.
In a complaint filed Monday in Brooklyn federal court, which was obtained by Page Six, Pivarnick alleges that Lt. Jonathan Schecter, of the EMS Rossville Station 23 in Staten Island, pestered her for sex, made inappropriate comments about her appearance, and groped her.
When Pivarnick, 33, spoke up and told Schecter to stop, she was allegedly punished with unpleasant tasks, including cleanup duty, according to the complaint.
The reality star also claims in the lawsuit that a different unnamed boss, who was not mentioned as a defendant, would often harass her about how many men she had slept with during her time on Jersey Shore.
In a statement to PEOPLE, Pivarnick said, “It should go without saying that what I experienced has nothing to do with television or entertainment. Like all women, I am entitled to be treated with dignity and respect at work. And I should not have to accept unwanted sexual advances, crude comments about my body or physical assault.”
Her attorneys, Kevin Mintzer and David Harrison, also told PEOPLE: “These are serious allegations that we intended to prove in court, with evidence. As the City’s own internal investigations have demonstrated, Ms. Pivarnick is the victim of egregious sexual harassment, and she is very brave to come forward on behalf of herself and other women who may be facing similar mistreatment. The City and EMS must do a better job at protecting its workers and ensuring that the behavior alleged in the complaint does not happen in the future.”
An attorney for Schecter could not be located by PEOPLE and the NYFD did not comment on his or the department’s behalf when contacted.
The lawsuit states that Pivarnick endured the sexual harassment from both men over a course of two years, beginning in 2017.
“Schechter incessantly subjected Pivarnick to unwelcome sexual advances, as well as comments about her body and physical appearance,” the lawsuit claims, adding that Pivarnick received multiple inappropriate text messages from the lieutenant.
The reality star claims that she told her supervisor she was not interested in his advances but he allegedly responded by texting her, “you still owe me something naughty,” according to the lawsuit.
In Sept. 2017, Schechter allegedly texted Pivarnick, “Your ass is amazing and I wish I wasn’t working or in uniform because I definitely would’ve kissed those amazing lips,” the lawsuit states.
His unwanted advances continued into May 2018, when Schechter allegedly “grabbed and squeezed her buttock” in a parking lot outside the Staten Island station and “made contact with her vaginal area,” according to the lawsuit.
Again, Pivarnick says that she shut down his advances and “made it clear” that he never touch her, but Schechter allegedly texted her later that day and wrote, “That ass! If you only knew the thoughts I had in my mind.”
As for the other unnamed lieutenant, the lawsuit states that he “apparently believed that he could speak to Pivarnick at work in sexually graphic and vulgar terms … [because] the program Jersey Shore was revived in 2018, and Pivarnick participated in several episodes of the new season.”
Ahead of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation‘s premiere in April 2018, Pivarnick alleges that the lieutenant inappropriately inquired about her sex life more than once.
“How many guys on Jersey Shore have you f—?” he allegedly asked in March 2018, according to the lawsuit, before asking her at a later time if she “f— [her] man.”
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There was also one particular day when Pivarnick was working at the station and her boss allegedly told her “Make sure no f— today.”
Pivarnick says she filed Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaints against both of her bosses, which were allegedly deemed “credible” by the FDNY’s EEO Office, according to Page Six.
However, after filing the complaints, she claims she was once again punished — this time, by other EMT higher-ups — who denied her preferred shifts and threatened that she would be reassigned to a different station.
At this time, it is unclear if the FDNY has taken any action against Schechter or the other man in the lawsuit.
When contacted by PEOPLE, a spokesperson for the FDNY directed all inquiries to the NYC Law Department, whose spokesperson said they “will review the case.”