A federal lawsuit in which Poquott Mayor Dolores Parrish accused a former village trustee of hacking her email and sharing private information with civic association leaders has been settled.
Parrish said in an email that she expected to receive $58,990 from the settlement, which she said had been reached in December. The settlement was confirmed by an attorney representing several defendants.
Parrish filed the lawsuit in November 2015 against then-village trustee John Pesek; his wife, Carol Pesek, president of the Poquott Civic Association; and civic association directors Felicia Chillak, Elizabeth Sutherland and Virginia Kryger.
Parrish alleged in the lawsuit that John Pesek broke into her email and shared information from it with his wife and civic association leaders. The defendants denied the allegations.
Anton J. Borovina of Melville, an attorney for Kryger, Chillak and Sutherland, confirmed the settlement. He said private insurance carriers for his clients agreed to the settlement.
“If it was up to us, we would not have settled for a dime,” Borovina said in an interview. “Not one acknowledgment of wrongdoing came from us.”
In a statement, Parrish said she was “extremely hopeful that the village will be able to bridge the divide that has grown over the past few years, and that Poquott’s future remains bright.”
Parrish, running as a write-in candidate, was re-elected last year to a second two-year term.
Carol Pesek also confirmed that insurance companies representing the defendants would pay the settlement. She said she and other defendants did not admit any wrongdoing as part of the settlement.
She said her insurance carrier agreed to the settlement because it was cheaper than going to trial.
“We didn’t really do anything wrong. We know we would have won, but we couldn’t afford to defend ourselves,” Pesek said. “The insurance company called the shots.”