The Hunt for a Leaker at the Harris County District Attorney’s Office

Friday, May 15, 2020

Aaron Holt was quoted in Texas Monthly discussing a public employee in Texas who was fired for sharing an internal email with the public. Firing a public employee for leaking an internal document may be a First Amendment violation, according to Aaron. Though he would not comment on Korah’s case specifically, he noted that the Supreme Court has ruled that public employees do not relinquish their constitutional right to comment on matters of public interest, although that right must be balanced against the employer’s interest in minimizing disruption to public services. The relevant question, according to Aaron, is whether the employee leaked the document as “an expression of a personal grievance,” which would not be protected, or to call attention to a “matter of public concern.”

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