A lawsuit reveals that a sergeant from the Bronx, who fell in love with a beautiful colleague and fathered a child with her, faced mistreatment from jealous fellow police officers. They conducted an investigation into the identity of the baby’s father as if it were a criminal case.
In 2019, Sgt. Milton Valerio, 40, crossed paths with Anajess Alvarez at the transit station house near Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. Anajess Alvarez, who was prominently featured in the NYPD’s recruitment billboards, had become the face of the police force.
Alvarez, 28, shared with The Post a playful smile as she recalled how she initially turned him down. “I told him ‘no’ a few times,” she said. However, fate had other plans for them. They ended up going out together with friends, and that’s when something magical happened – they simply clicked.
The couple made the decision to keep their relationship under wraps as she was a newcomer and desired to establish her own path as a police officer.
Valerio’s girlfriend, she said, “I wanted to establish my own identity and not be known solely as Valerio’s girlfriend.”
During the same period when they were developing feelings for each other, Alvarez mentioned that her married superior, Lt. Christian Hernandez, showed interest in her.
In October 2020, Alvarez’s situation took a turn for the worse when she informed her superiors about her pregnancy.
According to Valerio’s lawsuit, Hernandez developed an intense obsession with uncovering the identity of the father.
According to the lawsuit, Hernandez allegedly used the NYPD plate-reading system to track her own license plate and determine her whereabouts. She would also search for other vehicles assigned to the command to identify which officers were driving near her home.
According to Valerio’s lawsuit, Capt. Salvatore Marchese confronted Alvarez, expressing disappointment in her pregnancy and stating that she was one of his top officers.
According to court papers, Hernandez discovered in early 2021 that Alvarez was dating Valerio after he tracked the sergeant’s vehicle to the cop’s residence.
According to the lawsuit filed by Valerio, the revelation that Alvarez was involved with another member of the service was extremely difficult for defendant Hernandez to handle.
According to the lawsuit, Hernandez reportedly engaged in harassment against Valerio, with the intention of getting him expelled from the precinct. One of the allegations made by Hernandez was that Valerio had stolen vacation time, but this claim was proven to be false.
During her pregnancy, Alvarez had her car taken away and was given a foot post on an overnight shift for a duration of two months.
Alvarez, whose daughter with Valerio is now 3, firmly asserts, “I have not done anything wrong. It was because I ignored my lieutenant that he targeted Valerio.”
Valerio, a field intelligence officer who did not supervise Alvarez, mentioned that he missed out on overtime pay and promotions.
In response to a lap-dancing scandal in 2022, the NYPD has implemented a ban on dating between supervisors and the officers they directly oversee.
Alvarez, on the other hand, reached a resolution for her sexual harassment lawsuit against the city, Hernandez, and Marchese in August 2023. She received a settlement amounting to $225,000.
The couple is now engaged and in the midst of planning their wedding.
She continues to work in the Bronx transit district while Valerio is employed on the Upper West Side.
Alvarez acknowledged the challenges she faced as an attractive woman at the NYPD, knowing that it wouldn’t be an easy journey.
She expressed her surprise, saying, “I never expected it to be this unpleasant.”
The NYPD declined to provide a comment regarding the ongoing legal proceedings.
However, in the settlement agreement with Alvarez, it stated that it did not admit any wrongdoing.
According to Valerio’s lawyer, John Scola, the NYPD has demonstrated their incompetence in dealing with the widespread issue of sexual harassment within the department.
“In this case, an executive was permitted to utilize NYPD resources to monitor a female officer whom he was sexually harassing. Furthermore, he proceeded to fabricate charges against Sergeant Valerio without facing any consequences.”