In New York, a bizarre lawsuit case is unfolding involving an educator who gave public school students instructions on reciting the street warning of “snitches get stitches” over the loudspeaker system last November. A former employee of the school didn’t heed the words, and claims he was fired for snitching. The case is now before the Manhattan civil court.
The New York Post reports that 35-year-old Travis Lee Steinka worked at P.S. 257 in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg section as an occupational therapist. After his former colleague Yolanda Valez, a paraprofessional, urged the student body of over 300 to recite the grim mantra via microphone in the school’s cafeteria, Steinka was appalled. “I couldn’t believe my ears,” said Steinka to the Post. “That goes against everything a school stands for.”
P.S. 257 Principal Brian Leavy-Devale told the Post that Valez admitted to her actions.
Some will recall when current New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony landed in hot water over his appearance in a 2004 Baltimore home video DVD titled “Stop Snitching” which featured the player cavorting with a self-confessed drug dealer. The “snitches get stitches” term didn’t originate from that incident but many claim the DVD helped to popularize the phrase.