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A female rookie NYPD officer who made headlines in recent days after she gave a married male lieutenant a lap dance at a precinct holiday party has apologized to his wife while also saying she believes the incident drew so much attention because she’s a woman.
Twenty-six-year-old Vera Mekuli offered a video apology to 44th Precinct Lt. Nick McGarry’s wife, Melissa McGarry, after video of the lap dance, which took place at Rory Doland’s bar in Yonkers, on Dec. 15.
“I do want to apologize to the lieutenant’s wife. You know, I am sorry, truly I am and I really hope it didn’t cause too much damage in the marriage or in your personal life,” she said. “I know it’s been rough. I’ve been seeing the articles and I’ve been seeing pictures of you guys all over the newspapers as well as mine. It wasn’t meant to be like this. I really had no knowledge of your marriage.”
She went on to suggest that the act was meant to be more of a gag done just for “s**ts and giggles,” and that “everyone had been having drinks” when she was asked to do it on a dare. She also said that she has been working from home since the incident.
“It was supposed to be for fun, sh— and giggles,” Mekuli, who has been on the job just since February, said. “I feel like I’ve completely ruined, I guess, his picture as a lieutenant, as a boss. I know it doesn’t look good on him at all. But I do apologize.”
“I feel like just because, mainly — I’m a female, dressed the way I was, being a rookie — things were different,” Mekuli told TMZ. “Had it been a man doing it, I feel like it would have been more of a joking matter and it would have stayed in-house versus go public the way it did with me.”
McGarry has since been reassigned to subway patrol, according to the New York Post. No disciplinary action has been taken against her as of yet, however.
She also told TMZ she’s “the life of the party when it comes down to it,” and late into the party she was “dared” by coworkers to give someone a lap dance. She says she “grabbed the lieutenant, sat him down” and “did the lap dance.”
The rookie also said her NYPD bosses “feel bad” about what happened and have allowed her to work at home for the time being, though she’s not sure how long that will last or what happens next.
“I would love to go back. It’s hard. I feel like there’s just judgment and shame that shouldn’t be there,” she said, tearing up. “I feel like I shouldn’t be judged, or anything of that sort because of the lap dance that I did when I was off duty not in uniform.”
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