Victoria Ruiz, the frontperson of Downtown Boys, has resigned from a public defenders’ workplace after a viral video purported to point out her tearing down a poster in New York calling for the return of an Israeli hostage. In her resignation letter, Ruiz mentioned posters had been, in reality, put up by agitators at a vigil for Palestinian civilians killed within the conflict, and that, along with the hostage photographs, the poster she eliminated contained handwritten textual content advocating for the killing of Palestinian civilians.
Within the letter, Ruiz mentioned agitators heckled mourners on the vigil earlier than placing up the posters. “The one who took the video of me was amongst this group,” she wrote. “I noticed that one of many posters contained handwritten statements justifying the bombing of Palestinian civilians—the identical individuals whose deaths we had been there to mourn. I used to be deeply offended by the statements on the posters, and went over to take that poster down. At that time, the person from the group approached me and began recording the video, verbally misrepresenting on the video what I used to be doing and what I used to be taking concern with.”
She added, “I reject anti-semitism and I take very critically the troubling rise in each anti-semitism and Islamophobia in latest weeks. I additionally mourn the great lack of all harmless lives, and would by no means search to disparage or devalue any life, together with the lives of Israeli civilians.”
Ruiz mentioned she resigned underneath stress from her administration at New York County Defender Providers with out having had an opportunity to clarify the character of the posters. She added that administration spoke with shops together with the New York Put up with out giving her discover, looking for her model of occasions, or giving her a chance to talk with journalists.
In a press release to the Put up earlier than Ruiz’s resignation, Lupe Todd-Medina, spokesperson for NYCDS, had mentioned, “It has come to our consideration that one in every of our attorneys, Victoria Ruiz, just lately attended a public vigil solely in her capability as a non-public citizen.” The assertion continued, partly, “Ms. Ruiz has apologized to those that had been harm or confused by her actions. After an inner evaluation, and a pledge by all concerned to do higher, we settle for this apology and now refocus on the vigorous pursuit of our mission: reaching justice and dignity for each particular person we signify.”
Ruiz mentioned, nevertheless, that, over a sequence of calls, NYCDS indicated that she “wanted to resign instantly, or the board could be wanting into termination proceedings.” She additional alleged that, after the Put up article was printed, NYCDS didn’t enable her to be represented by authorized counsel in discussions of her employment.
Pitchfork has reached out to Victoria Ruiz for extra remark and data. NYCDS’ Lupe Todd-Medina provided no additional remark when reached by Pitchfork.