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Hello. I am a criminal lawyer and I will do my best to answer your question. You said the officer was "there" on another matter. Was your car parked in a public place that was viewable to the general public? If not... why was the officer there (be specific)? Also, do you know why the officer's attention was drawn to your vehicle and how many vehicles were in the lot?
Courts have been pretty consistent that we have no reasonable expectation of privacy to our license plate numbers. If an officer stops you to run the plate then he must have a reasonable suspicion that you committed an offense before he could detain you. However, without such a seizure and without the officer invading a reasonable expectation of privacy, I can think of nothing that would deem his actions improper in the eyes of the court.
Since the officer likely did not see you driving, he/she could not arrest you but he/she could inform your employer of your license status. I also know of no civil action that you can take against the police officer for informing your employer as long as the information given your employer was entirely true. If any of it is false or misleading, you would have a civil claim for defamation against the police officer. You should consult a local attorney if you would like to evaluate your potential civil claim against the police for defamation.
I realize it was a lousy thing to do but I think you will find it was legal.
Please reply if I can help further.
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