Northwell Health claims in court papers that Quantaise Sharpton continued to post “macabre” images taken inside Long Island Jewish Medical Center even after she was fired.
The lawsuit, which was filed in Nassau County Supreme Court, alleges that the material included images and videos of bodies with electrical burns, amputated body parts, internal organs and even a late stillbirth.
Some of the graphic material was paired with dance music and also allegedly featured her mocking the smell or condition of the cadavers.
On her social media accounts, where she has nearly 20,000 followers on Instagram and 1,000 on TikTok, Ms Sharpton refers to herself as “#autopsybae”.
“As a morgue attendant, Sharpton assumed a position of the utmost trust and confidence with Northwell,” the suit states. “Sharpton took advantage of the trust given to her by Northwell for her own personal gain. Indeed, Sharpton’s posting of pictures and videos from the LIJMC morgue onto her social media platforms marks a gross deviation from the level of care and loyalty expected as Northwell’s employee.”
The suit also states that despite efforts by Northwell, the largest hospital system in the state of New York, Ms Sharpton has refused to take down the “offensive” material.
Court documents state that she was hired as a morgue attendant at the New Hyde Park hospital last December and began work on 30 January.
Before she started the job she went through mandatory training on patient privacy, the ban on cellphones in the morgue, inappropriate social media posting and the use of hospital resources, the suit says.
She was fired on 17 March after other staff members raised the alarm about her social media postings.
Hospital officials ordered her to delete the photos and videos from her social media pages before she left the hospital, which an affidavit states that she had appeared to do,
“Sharpton explained that she is a social media influencer and that she receives monthly revenue based on her posts, and that she viewed her morgue and autopsy photos and videos as social media ‘content,” Vartges Saroyan, Northwell’s compliance program director and privacy officer, stated. “Sharpton expressed no remorse or regret for her conduct.”
Northwell states that days after her firing she reposted the deleted images and videos, as well as new ones that she had not before made public.
The lawsuit asks a judge to issue a preliminary injunction ordering Ms Sharpton to permanently delete the photos and videos and also seeks undetermined damages.
“Northwell Health strives to provide the highest level of care to its patients, patients’ families and communities. As this matter is in active litigation, we refrain from commenting regarding this matter,” Northwell told The Independent in a statement.
The Independent reached out to Ms Sharpton through her social media pages.