- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 4, 2018

The woman who won her 15 minutes of fame last fall by flipping the bird at President Trump’s motorcade is now suing the company that fired her.

Juli Briskman filed her case in state court Wednesday accusing Herndon-based Akima of breaking a Virginia law that bars companies from firing someone because of fear of unlawful government retaliation, the Guardian and other news outlets reported.

The moment happened last October, when the presidential motorcade passed Ms. Briskman on her bicycle in Sterling, prompting her to raise her left arm and then raise the middle finger some more.

The gesture was captured by the White House pool reporter and quickly made Ms. Briskman, who posted the image to her Facebook page and took credit as the unknown cyclist, an Internet celebrity.

And an ex-worker at Akima, a government contractor where Ms. Briskman had worked as a marketing executive for six months.

The company said at the time that the photo barred their Internet-use policy, but Ms. Briskman contends it was fear of the Trump administration, citing, among other facts, that her Facebook page did not mention where she worked.

“Working for a company that does business with the federal government should provide you with greater opportunities, but it should never limit your ability to criticize that government in your private time,” Ms. Briskman said in a statement. “The actions of my company were swift and unexpected. It is un-American to let the government use your own tax dollars to buy your off-duty obedience.”

She is suing for severance pay.

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