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Brooklyn Fire Department employee finds noose at work

By Kiran Khalid, CNN
  • Electrician Gregory Seabrook says he found the noose in front of his work locker
  • He found it after filing a discrimination complaint against New York Fire Department
  • Seabrook is an African-American who has worked 20 years for the Fire Department

New York (CNN) -- An African-American electrician discovered a noose in front of his work locker after filing a racial discrimination complaint against the New York Fire Department, the man's attorneys said Monday.

Gregory Seabrook said he found the noose Thursday at a firehouse where he worked in Brooklyn, New York, according to

his attorney, Howard Shafran.

"I was surprised and appalled that in this day and age I would find that," Seabrook told reporters.

The 20-year department veteran filed a complaint with The New York State Division of Human Rights in December, saying he was denied overtime, had fewer chances at promotions than his white counterparts and was referred to by his colleagues as a "black rat," according to the complaint.

"This is a clear and unambiguous token of hatred," said Shafran, referencing the noose. "One could reasonably conclude that you're dealing with a culture of intolerance."

A Fire Department spokesman declined to comment about the case, but the department issued a written statement that said it "takes all alleged incidents of discrimination seriously and we're thoroughly looking into the incident in question."

The Fire Department faced similar accusations in 2005 when New York firefighter Lanaird Granger filed a complaint saying that he discovered a noose at a Brooklyn firehouse.