PHOENIX (CBS5) -
A former Phoenix police officer has been sentenced to seven years in prison, following a plea deal that allowed him to plead guilty to manslaughter in the shooting death of an unarmed suspect.
Judge Warren Granville sentenced Richard Chrisman Friday afternoon in Maricopa County court on both manslaughter and assault charges.
Chrisman was charged after he shot and killed 28-year-old Daniel Rodriguez and his dog in October 2010 during a domestic violence call. Rodriguez was not armed.
Chrisman was found guilty of assault in September, but the jury couldn't reach verdicts on murder and animal cruelty charges. He was set to be re-tried on those charges in January.
Chrisman took a plea deal last week to avoid another murder trial.
He faced up to 14 years in prison for manslaughter.
A former Philadelphia police officer who sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl at a suburban motel has been sentenced to six to 20 years in state prison. 37-year-old Anthony Dattilo wept during his sentencing Friday and apologized for embarrassing his family.Dattilo will also be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life. The 12-year police force veteran was arrested in May 2012 after the victim sent text messages to family members saying she was being held against her will at a hotel in Bensalem.
A Frankfort police officer has been charged with intimidation and phone harassment, charges related to his alleged beating of a former girlfriend in the summer of 2012.
Officer Donald Walsh, 30, of Monee, was arrested Wednesday in a Will County courtroom. His bail was set at $50,000.
He’s accused of threatening the woman in a June 2012 phone call that she secretly recorded — about a month before Walsh allegedly choked and struck her at her Mokena residence. The woman kept a copy of the recording and gave another copy to her sister, who locked it in a safe-deposit box, prosecutors said.
Walsh has denied attacking the woman. He has been on administrative leave without pay since his arrest in July 2012.
Mokena police learned about the telephone recording when the attorneys in Walsh’s battery case did — when told by the victim’s sister at the start of Walsh’s trial on Nov. 20.
Mokena police had investigated the July 2012 attack for criminal purposes, but Frankfort police conducted an internal inquiry for disciplinary reasons. Frankfort Police Chief John Burica and Deputy Chief Robert Krause testified during a recent hearing on the recording that they discussed it with village attorney David Silverman and decided the tape would not be used in their disciplinary case against Walsh.
The two police officials said they did not tell Mokena police or the special prosecutor in the battery case that the recording existed.
Circuit Court Judge Edward Burmila found that to be a violation of the evidentiary process and said Wednesday that the prosecution will not be allowed to use the recorded call in the battery trial, which is set to resume Jan. 13.
Defense rests in trial of ex-Fullerton officers charged with killing homeless man
SANTA ANA, California — A defense pathologist testified Wednesday that a homeless man who died after a 2011 struggle with Fullerton police had an enlarged heart from years of methamphetamine abuse.
Dr. Steven Karch said Kelly Thomas probably suffered heart failure during the struggle, the Orange County Register reported (http://bit.ly/1cRFHvm ).
Thomas' death was "precipitated by a spontaneous and concurrent psychotic episode" brought about by his drug use that was a factor in his violent encounter with police, Karch testified.
Karch said he disagreed with an Orange County pathologist who conducted the autopsy and concluded that Thomas died, in part, from lack of oxygen to the brain caused by compression of his chest and head injuries received during the confrontation.
Karch was the 13th and final witness called by the defense in the trial of two former Fullerton police officers.
Manuel Ramos, 39, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, and Jay Cicinelli, 41, has pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter and use of excessive force.
A third officer will be tried separately on a charge of involuntary manslaughter.
Thomas, 37, had a history of drug use, citations for minor crimes and violent behavior. The officers' attorneys argued that he became violently combative after he was stopped and questioned July 5, 2011. He stopped breathing and was removed from life support five days later.
Much of the incident was captured by a security camera and audio recordings from officers' body microphones. The case garnered national attention at the time and fueled months of local protests that led to the resignation of the police chief and a recall election in the small college town.
Frank Juliano and Michael P. Mayko
Bridgeport Officer Juan Santiago discharged a gun in a crowded restaurant, shooting himself in the leg.
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. -- The veteran police officer who discharged a gun in a crowded restaurant Tuesday, shooting himself in the leg and blowing a bowling ball-sized hole through a nearby window, has been released from St. Vincent's Medical Center and placed on paid sick leave.
But Juan Santiago, the 55-year-old officer who heads the department's Police Hispanic Society, faces no criminal charges, nor does he face any violation of department rules and regulations, which has caused community activists to claim police use double standards to protect their own.
"This doesn't surprise me," said James Griffin, the city's former veterans' affairs administrator who now heads the Waterbury Center for Economic and Social Justice. "It's just another example of police covering for police."
Griffin, who once served as statewide NAACP president, said Police Chief Joseph Gaudett should have taken immediate action, even if it was just placing Santiago on administrative leave.
"Anybody other than a cop would be in big, big trouble," he said.
Lyle Hassan Jones, who has led marches against gun violence in Bridgeport as the head of Save Our Babies, agreed with Griffin.
"How can he not be charged with unlawful discharge or reckless endangerment?" Jones asked. "That's what would happen to you or me. That gun going off had to scare the customers to death. You think if I fired it I'd be walking out of that restaurant scot-free?"
But Jeff Matchett, executive director of AFSCME Council 15 of the Connecticut Council of Police -- the union that represents 4,000 police officers from more than 60 state communities -- maintained that firing a gun accidentally inside a restaurant would not result in an on-site arrest.
"That's not how I'd handle it, whether it was you, a cop or anyone," said Matchett, a retired Milford police officer. "I'd trace the gun, make sure the owner had a permit, interview witnesses."
Once that was completed, Matchett said he'd apply to the court for an arrest warrant before taking the person into custody.
"Oh, is that right?," countered John R. Williams, a veteran New Haven civil rights and criminal defense lawyer. "Try telling that to the president of the New Haven County Bar who was arrested last summer at a movie theater for having a gun that he had a permit for."
Williams said Santiago's actions represent "a classic case of reckless endangerment ... people's lives were put at risk. If he wasn't wearing a badge, he'd have been arrested."
Nearly a dozen police cruisers -- with their sirens screaming, strobe lights flashing and tires squealing -- skidded to a stop outside the Bagel King restaurant on upper Main Street around 9 a.m. Tuesday on reports that a police officer was down.
Inside, Santiago was bleeding from the leg. Shards of glass from the shattered window lay on the ground.
Moments earlier, Santiago was sitting at a table with Det. Juan Gonzalez. Gonzalez had placed a borrowed .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol atop the table with the intention of returning it to its owner, a local doctor.
BY BILL SAN ANTONIO
Nassau County Police Commissioner Thomas Dale resigned Thursday amid an investigation by the county district attorney’s office into allegations that Dale ordered the arrest of a worker for a third-party candidate for county executive for political purposes.
Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano said in a statement issued by his office that he met with Dale Thursday morning to discuss the investigation, whereupon Dale, who was hired as commissioner in January 2012 after more than 40 years with the New York City Police Department, resigned.
Mangano said the county’s executive for public safety, Victor Politi, will serve as acting police commissioner while he considers Dale’s replacement.
“District Attorney Rice today brought a troubling matter to my attention regarding questionable influence within the Nassau County Police Department. Upon further investigation, the District Attorney found no evidence to indicate criminality but the investigation itself indicates a fresh look at internal procedures is warranted,” Mangano said in a statement. “This approach is necessary to maintain the highest standards of police internal administration. New leadership sends a clear message that stringent administrative review and application is underway.”
The district attorney’s investigation also resulted in the resignation of Sgt. Sal Mistretta and the retirement of Chief of Detectives John Capece. Narcotics Vice Squad Inspector Kevin Smith has been appointed to fill Capece’s position.
Mangano said in an interview with Newsday on Saturday that he is seeking a disciplinarian like Dale to be the department’s next commissioner.
The investigation, detailed in a four-page letter to Mangano by Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice, describes the arrest of Roosevelt resident Randy White, 29, who in early October had testified in a civil proceeding in state Supreme Court to being paid for each signature he collected for former Freeport Mayor Andrew Hardwick, who was seeking to run on the “We Count” party line against Mangano and Democratic candidate Tom Suozzi.
Petitioners in New York State may not be paid by signature, though payment by hour is legal. Hardwick has denied paying White per signature.
On Oct. 5, White was arrested while on a N41 bus that was boarded by officers at a bus stop in Roosevelt for failing to pay $250 in fines stemming from an outstanding arrest warrant for a misdemeanor counterfeiting conviction.
The warrant for White’s arrest was brought to Dale’s attention a day prior, after Huntington resident Gary Melius, the owner of the Oheka Castle catering hall and a financial supporter of Hardwick’s campaign, called the former commissioner to inform him of the campaign’s desire to file a perjury charge against White based on an audiotape allegedly implicating him for lying during his testimony.
According to Rice’s letter, Dale directed Melius to report the allegations to the First Precinct in Baldwin and sent Capece and a lawyer for the police department to meet with a Hardwick attorney and other campaign members, who reviewed the complaint against White and the audiotape, which was deemed inaudible.
Though White was not arrested or charged with perjury as a result of the meeting, First Precinct officers drafted an Unusual Occurrence Report, which requires a standard criminal background check of the people named in the report.
When information of White’s arrest warrant was found and brought to Dale’s attention, the former commissioner ordered that White to be apprehended.
While in police custody, White was served with a civil subpoena drafted by Hardwick’s attorney by Mistretta, a Nassau County Police Department sergeant who was off-duty at the time, requiring White to appear in court on Oct. 7.
Rice wrote that Dale denied being aware of the subpoena until a few days after White was served and that her office’s investigation has “uncovered nothing to call Commissioner Dale’s claim concerning the service of that subpoena into question.”
Rice added that “Commissioner Dale claimed it is not unusual for the Department to go to such great lengths to apprehend the subject of a ‘failure-to-pay’ warrant” and found Dale’s actions were not criminal.
She also wrote that her investigation uncovered nothing to suggest that either Mangano or members of his administration were involved in the case.
“Given the case’s political overtones and given the motivations of the complaint - to gain ballot access for a candidate running in a race that involved the re-election effort of an administration that serves as Commissioner Dale’s direct supervisor - this was a judgment potentially fraught with peril,” Rice wrote. “But while Commissioner Dale’s personal involvement in this case was unusual, and while the public is right to be concerned with politically-interested civilian influence over its police department, Commissioner Dale’s mere involvement in this case is not evidence of a crime.”
Democratic lawmakers on Monday said Rice’s investigation into White’s arrest did not probe deeply enough into the political undertones of the case.
“I’m astonished that something like this can happen today in Nassau County and no one sees anything wrong with it,” said Democratic Minority Leader Kevan Abrahams [D-Hempstead]. “We believe Commissioner Dale completely abused his authority and used his entire weight of the police force to arrest and intimidate a witness.”
In a news release, Democratic legislators called for Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves [R-East Meadow] to schedule a hearing of the county Legislature for Dale, Mangano and members of the county executive’s administration to testify and answer questions regarding their role in the events leading to the district attorney’s investigation.
They also called for a prosecutor without connection to either Nassau County or the case to conduct an outside investigation that would provide a “fresh look” to see if Dale committed a crime through his actions regarding White’s arrest.
“The buck stops with the County Executive and Mangano has to answer to the people of Nassau through legislative hearings for the actions of his top level appointments,” said Nassau County Legislator Dave Denenberg [D-Merrick] in a statement. “Furthermore, it is naive to believe that Dale intervened in this type of matter, with the implications of his boss’s re-election, without the approval and knowledge of his direct boss, Mangano, and/or others in the administration.”
“It is ironic that Mangano says he wants his next commissioner to be a disciplinarian from outside the NCPD, when that is exactly what Dale was supposed to be,” Denenberg continued.
Mangano spokesman Brian Nevin said Monday that “the actions of the county executive have been unequivocal,” and that Mangano’s lack of involvement in White’s arrest has already been proven by Rice’s investigation.
“The integrity of this administration will not be harmed by any action, person or agency,” Nevin said in an e-mail. “We will have no response to those who now seek to engage in cheap partisan politics.”
by Dillon Collier / KENS 5
CASTLE HILLS -- The Castle Hills Police Department suspended its second-in-command Thursday, nearly a month after he was involved in a fatal officer-involved shooting 15 miles outside of Castle Hills jurisdiction.
Capt. John Siemens was suspended for three days for violating the department's code of conduct pertaining to on-duty activities.
Siemens left work Nov. 20 after receiving a frantic phone call from his brother, who lives in the 9400 block of Rue de Bois.
His brother's neighbor, 46-year-old Andrew Beard, was firing several weapons in his backyard.
Beard had refused to leave the same home several weeks earlier, prompting an hours-long standoff situation with San Antonio Police.
Investigators said Siemens evacuated at least one family from the neighborhood, then fell in with SAPD officers who were approaching Beard in a front yard.
Beard was eventually shot after firing on officers, but he then attempted to get up and fire at them again.
Siemens, armed with a long rifle, then shot and killed Beard, investigators said.
Police on the scene originally said Siemens was off duty and visiting a relative in the area.
But a KENS 5 I-Team investigation revealed Siemens was on duty and out of Castle Hills jurisdiction when the shooting happened.
Castle Hills Police Chief Wayne Davis praised Siemens in November for possibly saving lives at the scene, but he acknowledged Siemens would likely be suspended.
Siemens joined the Castle Hills Police Department earlier this year after spending more than 10 years with the Boerne and Universal City police departments.
ATLANTIC CITY — One of the six Atlantic City police officers accused of using excessive force while arresting a South Jersey man earlier this year has previously been named in at least six other similar lawsuits, according to a report on PressofAtlanticCity.com.
In a suit filed Tuesday in Camden, David Connor Castellani and his family are seeking unspecified damages from the Atlantic City Police Department, the city and the six cops, according to a report on NBC40.net.
Surveillance footage from the Tropicana shows multiple police officers clubbing and kneeing Castellani while attempting to take him into custody on June 15. The Linwood man was thrown out of a nightclub in the hotel because he was underage, the Press report said.
Moments later, the officer, Sterling Wheaten, arrives with his K-9 partner. In the video the dog can be seen biting the Linwood man.
Castellani's family said he spent four days in the hospital and asserted his life was in jeopardy during the attack.
"Deadly force, not just excessive force but deadly force, the attorney told the television station. "This dog could have killed him."
Catellalli's father said his son has permanent nerve damage and muscle paralysis. He received 200 stitches and must go to therapy daily, the Press reported.
The 20-year-old was charged with aggravated assault on an officer, attempt to commit harm to a police dog, disorderly conduct, and resisting arrest.
The investigation into the officers will be overseen by the state Attorney General's Office and the U.S. Attorney's Office, Atlantic City Mayor Lorenzo Langford told the Press.
One of the lawsuits involving Wheaten was dismissed and one was settled out of court.
CAMDEN — Jurors have awarded a man $500,000 in compensatory damages after finding an Atlantic City police officer used excessive force and was not properly trained.
The federal jury in Camden found Officer Sterling Wheaten did not owe punitive damages in the lawsuit, which was filed by a former deputy state attorney general. Michael Troso was arrested at his bachelor party at Trump Marina Restaurant in 2008.
Troso said he was beaten and lost his job as a result of the arrest.
Jurors found four other officers named in the lawsuit did nothing wrong.
The lawyer who represented the officers tells The Press of Atlantic City she plans to appeal and will seek to set aside the verdict against the city, which owes half of the award.
Wheaten faces additional lawsuits.
MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) -
The Minneapolis Police Department will no longer handle investigations of police misconduct internally, instead handing cases involving officer-involved shootings and other critical incidents over to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.
Chief Janee Harteau on Wednesday said the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension will take over the most serious internal investigations.
"This is about perception and public trust and being in line with SOPs across the state," Harteau said. "Although we didn't necessarily have specific conversations about this, there were concerns by members of this council and members of the community as to why Minneapolis continues to investigate their own critical incidents."
Yet, later on Wednesday night, Gov. Mark Dayton's office put a spike in that plan. In an unusually testy statement, a spokesperson for the governor said Harteau unilaterally announced the arrangement without notifying the public safety commissioner, Dayton, or the governor's staff. In fact, the press secretary said the course of action is one "the governor considers extremely inappropriate."
"Given this turn of events, and until all parties reach agreement on this matter, the arrangement announced by the Minneapolis chief of police is inoperative," the statement read.
In response, Minneapolis Police spokeswoman Cyndi Barrington said Harteau is "perplexed" by Dayton's reaction.
"Arrangements had already been made with the BCA to handle critical incidents beginning Dec. 16, 2012," Barrington said.
Harteau also talked about her Citizens Advisory Council, which released its 2014 action plan to build a strong relationship with the community.
TRANSPARENCY VS. LEAKS
Every one of the past 5 Minneapolis police chiefs has been concerned about leaks, which can sometimes compromise an investigation or be simply embarrassing. Now, Harteau is asking all Minneapolis Police Department personnel to sign a document some have likened to a loyalty oath.
When Harteau announced MPD would no longer investigate its own critical incidents -- such as the police killing Terrance Franklin this summer.
"This is all about public trust," Harteau said. "This is about perception and public trust."
Yet, within the halls of the MPD, people were talking about the special order sent out last week regarding the release of information. The department was told "only authorized personnel are allowed to communicate with non-MPD personnel," like the media.
The penalty for leaking could be discharge, and possibly even prosecution. All MPD employees will be required to sign the order in front of their supervisor.
In the memo, Harteau wrote that leaks have been "detrimental to the department over the years and more recently in major events of the past year." The department did not specify which leaks Harteau was referencing.
Yet, the media learned that Franklin's DNA was found on an officer's submachine gun via a leak, and that he was shot 10 times, months before the official explanation confirmed those facts. The Minneapolis officers who used racial slurs in Green Bay were also identified through a leak. The Fox 9 News investigation into a liquor license investigation that was halted relied on off-the-record sources -- and the chief wasn't happy about that one either.
There can be no doubt that such a requirement could have a chilling effect at City Hall, especially within the department. One officer told Fox 9 Reporter Tom Lyden, '"Lyden, do you think I'm going to talk to you and possibly be fired or face prosecution under Data Practices? Think again."
It is true that Harteau is more than willing to be open with the things she wishes to be open about, as is the case with her council.
"It's about sharing information and understanding what the issues are," she said.
Yet, the portrait begs the question whether that's really transparency or just business as usual. Minneapolis police declined an interview request regarding the special order; however, a spokesperson said the effort is geared to maintain the integrity of active investigations. Even so, police have not offered a single example of how a leak jeopardized an ongoing case.
Yet, the portrait begs the question whether that's really transparency or just business as usual. Minneapolis police declined an interview request regarding the special order; however, a spokesperson said the effort is geared to maintain the integrity of active investigations. Even so, police have not offered a single example of how a leak jeopardized an ongoing case.
Training: New recruits and current patrol officers will receive 4 hours of customer service training that focuses on listening, de-escalation and building trust.
Accountability: The focus will be on creating dialog and an opportunity for informative talks by scheduling quarterly meetings with MPD supervisors to visit neighborhood churches of all denominations throughout the city.
Hiring and Recruitment: The MPD will be refreshing the recruitment process and adding a community member to the interview process for new hires.
Community Engagement and Outreach: The focus will be on informing the community on how and why the MPD serves the public. Often times, the public does not understand the process, procedures and policies of the MPD and by explaining how things work, the public will be better informed.
DES MOINES (AP) — A former Des Moines police officer is in federal custody on a charge of assaulting a man during an arrest in February.
Federal prosecutors said Colin Boone was indicted Tuesday and arrested in South Dakota on Thursday morning.
The formal charge is deprivation of rights under color of law, which is a violation of the constitutional rights citizens have against unreasonable force by police.
A grand jury indictment document alleges Boone kicked a man causing an injury in February. The charge carries a prison sentence of up to 10 years.
U.S. Attorney Nicholas Klinefeldt said in a statement the arrest is the result of an FBI investigation.
Jess Remington|Dec. 19, 2013 6:40 pm
It's happening: The Civilian Complaint Review Board, an independent police misconduct agency that was recently awarded the power to prosecute NYPD officers, is making its first prosecution for misapplied stop-and-frisk.
BloomsberriesBloomsberriesThe officer, Roman Goris, has been charged with abuse of power and using stop-and-frisk without legal authority. The charges stem from an incident two years ago in which Goris detained and issued disorderly conduct summonses to a man for what seems like his snarky comments.
On December 23, 2011, Goris and two other officers approached Yahnick Martin, a 35-year-old, black, real estate broker who was smoking a cigar on a Brooklyn sidewalk, waiting for his wife to finish delivering Christmas presents. The officers accused Martin of smelling like marijuana and said they would need to search his pockets. According to the New York Daily News, Martin did not take kindly to the accusation:
"OK. I'll put my hands up but this is really bulls--t," Martin says he told them. Goris pulled out his wallet and lighter, and finding nothing else, handed them back to Martin and started to walk away.
Martin says he [sarcastically] quipped, "Where's the $100 that was in my pocket?"
Goris wasn't amused, court papers say. He started arguing with the married dad, who then asked him for his name and shield number. "You want to be a smartass and make accusations, you're going to jail," another of the officers allegedly responded.
Goris, 33, then handcuffed him "very tightly" and they took him to the 77th Precinct, court papers say.
As he was being hauled off, Martin says he asked the officers to wait until his wife came back to their unlocked car, which was filled with Christmas gifts and had been left running with the keys in the ignition. According to the lawsuit, an officer allegedly told him, “That’s too bad, you should have thought of that before being a smartass."
When Martin was allowed to return to the scene — after being issued two disorderly conduct summonses that were eventually dropped — his car and gifts were gone.
Police recovered Martin's van several weeks later, but by that time, the thief had stolen the presents and ran up charges on Martin's wife's credit card. Additionally, the van rental company charged him $800 for damage to the vehicle.
Martin is suing Goris and the NYPD for $2 million in damages.
In addition to Martin's lawsuit, Goris may actually be disciplined for his alleged misconduct. This is a result of a city agreement reached last year that gives the CCRB the authority to prosecute in police misconduct trials.
The CCRB is an all-civilian board tasked with investigating complaints about alleged misconduct among NYPD officers. For two decades, the organization was charged exclusively with substantiating complaints for legitimacy and issuing recommendations to the NYPD for how the offending officers should be prosecuted or disciplined.
Critics had called the CCRB's power to effectively punish police misconduct into question. According to studies, the majority of police misconduct allegations against the NYPD do not result in trials. Of the substantiated complaints that do reach trial, few are prosecuted and judges often dole out lighter punishments than those recommended.
Following the city agreement though, the CCRB will likely try to increase the rate at which substantiated claims are prosecuted. Their new prosecutorial unit started receiving cases in April and has its first trials scheduled for this month.
However, the trials still use a judge employed by the police department and the NYPD Commissioner gets the final say in all verdicts. With this power, the police department still gets to issue the ultimate ruling in officer misconduct cases.
Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
NEW ORLEANS - A 22-year veteran New Orleans police officer was arrested and charged with reckless driving and evading police on the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway. Authorities say another driver called Causeway police after NOPD Sergeant Gary Calico passed him driving very erratically on the 24-mile bridge, Wednesday night.
"The original call was because another motorist thought this individual was impaired and was driving under the influence of alcohol," said Causeway GM Carlton Dufrechou.
Police caught up with Calico's car and tried to get him to stop. They say Calico slowed down like he was about to stop as he got off the bridge on the Northshore. Then, according to police, Calico hit the gas and sped down Highway 190.
At one point he was clocked going more than 96 miles per hour in a 45 mile per hour zone.
"He tried to lose not only our officer, but the state police, made a u-turn in one area and almost hit both police units," said Dufrechou.
The high speed chase ended inside a gated community in Covington. Police spotted his car in front of a house and knocked on the door.
"At first no one came out, knocked again and then a teenager came out and my understanding is this may have been the driver's son," said Dufrechou. "He indicated or stated that his father was not at home."
Police got a warrant and for Calico's arrest. He surrendered with his attorney Raymond Burkhart at St. Tammany Parish Prison, Thursday night.
"We haven't seen the police reports," said Burkhart. "We haven't seen the evidence. We know they are just that, allegations and he has a presumption of innocence, until proven guilty. Everybody needs to remember that." Burkhart described the charges against his client as traffic violations.
"People speed on that bridge every day, all day," said Burkhart. "People make illegal u-turns every day, all day. People come flying off that bridge, every day, all day."
The NOPD fired Calico after a high speed chase on the Causeway seven years ago. The city's Civil Service Commission ruled there was not sufficient grounds to support the firing and ordered his reinstatement.
The NOPD placed Calico on emergency suspension after this latest brush with the law.
Newsday identified more than 200 Long Island officers linked to misconduct cases by departmental charges, jury verdicts or multiple court settlements. The Suffolk County Police Department provided Newsday with 300 pages of departmental charges for misconduct by officers whose names were redacted from the records. However, Newsday obtained a similar set of records with no redactions from a source requesting anonymity. The Nassau County Police Department did not provide any misconduct records.
The following 50 case studies are a sample of the types of misconduct accusations against Nassau and Suffolk police officers, and in most cases, how that misconduct was handled by department officials.
The following 50 case studies are a sample of the types of misconduct accusations against Nassau and Suffolk police officers, and in most cases, how that misconduct was handled by department officials.
NAME: Christine Amthor
Summary: The department charged Amthor a year after a June 2008 car accident in which she was accused of being impaired by drugs while her young child was in the car with her. She also acted "in a manner which brought discredit upon herself and the department while in the presence of several witnesses who were aware of her position as a Suffolk County police officer," according to the June 2009 departmental charges.
Amthor acknowledged general misconduct and agreed in September 2009 to forfeit 15 days of accrued leave. She also agreed to submit to alcohol and drug testing while on duty, the department records show.
Amthor earned $129,793 in the most recent budget year, according to records. She did not respond to a call for comment.
NAME: Edward Bienz
Summary: Nassau County's Internal Affairs Unit recommended that five departmental charges be brought against Bienz, who was with Officer Anthony DiLeonardo when he shot and beat an unarmed cabdriver, Thomas Moroughan, in February 2011.
The IA investigation determined that Bienz committed two unlawful acts and three counts of violating department rules. He was found to have engaged in conduct unbecoming an officer and to be unfit for duty by reason of intoxicants, among other violations of department rules. Both DiLeonardo and Bienz were off duty when Moroughan was injured.
The department has declined to say whether Bienz faced any discipline for his actions. He was not criminally charged. He remains on the job and made $148,682 in the most recent budget year.
He did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: Bruce Blanco
Summary: Suffolk police charged Blanco in October 2008 with extorting and accepting a bribe from a contractor in the form of a $15,000 brick patio.
Blanco allegedly gave false testimony in traffic court about a May 2008 motorcycle stop after fixing a speeding ticket for the contractor. Investigators recorded Blanco on audio and videotape negotiating the terms of the patio construction at his Commack home in exchange for making the traffic ticket go away.
In a lawsuit filed against Blanco and the department by the contractor, Adam McCabe, he said he built the patio because Blanco told him he faced jail time. The case was settled in May 2011 for an undisclosed amount.
The department charged Blanco with misconduct after his arrest and suspended him without pay. In December 2008, the department put him on paid suspension but then brought new charges against him for failing to notify the commissioner that he'd filed for retirement. He was again suspended without pay.
Blanco pleaded guilty to attempted larceny but did not serve any jail time. He retired in June 2009 and collects an annual pension of $89,402.
In an interview, he said he was innocent and did not fight the charges to protect his family. "I did nothing wrong," Blanco said. "That's the honest truth."
He said he was singled out for discipline because he had angered his superiors.
"People that know me, know me. When I was working, I took my job very serious. I was a good cop," he said.
NAME: Robert W. Bodenmiller
Summary: Bodenmiller has been the subject of two excessive-force lawsuits, both of which are pending.
Bodenmiller shot and wounded Michael Moran in a Dunkin' Donuts in West Babylon in August 2010. Police had been trying to subdue his girlfriend after a doctor's office had called and said she was suicidal. When Moran saw officers attempting to subdue her, he threw a backpack at them. Bodenmiller shot him. Police charged Moran with obstructing governmental administration. That charge was later dropped.
A Suffolk internal affairs investigation exonerated Bodenmiller, according to a March 20, 2012, internal memo.
Moran sued the county and an unnamed police officer, which later court records show is Bodenmiller, alleging that police shot him "without justification and despite no danger of physical harm."
In court papers, the county has denied those allegations.
In a separate case, Bodenmiller is one of 15 officers named as defendants by the estate of Daniel McDonnell, a Lindenhurst carpenter who died while in police custody in May 2011. In court papers, the county has denied the allegations.
According to a state Corrections Commission report issued two years later, McDonnell died after First Precinct cops shot him repeatedly with a stun gun and pinned him to the floor with a riot shield after he flooded his cell by stuffing his clothes in the toilet. The state report found that McDonnell's death was a "preventable" homicide and that Suffolk police, the district attorney and medical examiner all failed to properly investigate it. County and police officials declined to comment on the report, but district attorney spokesman Robert Clifford called the report "inaccurate and baseless" at the time.
Records show that Bodenmiller made $139,810 in the most recent budget year. Bodenmiller said in an interview, "I would love to comment, but I can't because they're both pending lawsuits."
Summary: Branigan was a highway patrol sergeant when the department suspended him without pay on Feb. 22, 2008. Three days later, the department charged him with falsely reporting a crime, which "constituted conduct unbecoming an officer," according to the departmental charges. He retired in March 2008.
According to his online LinkedIn profile, Branigan went on to attend Touro Law School and then to work for the Suffolk district attorney's office in 2011. Records show he continues to work as an assistant district attorney in Suffolk.
District Attorney Thomas Spota did not respond to questions about his hiring of Branigan. He also did not respond when asked whether his office sought a waiver allowing Branigan to collect both his pension and a salary. Records show he is on the payroll and collects a pension.
Branigan did not return a call for comment.
NAME: Craig Buonora and James Vara
Summary: Darryl Coggins was driving with two friends in Floral Park in October 2004 when Buonora and Vara pulled their squad car behind him and turned on their lights. Coggins pulled over.
In an interview with Newsday, Coggins said when he asked why he'd been stopped, Vara replied that he had been speeding. Coggins said he didn't think so because he had been at a red light shortly before being pulled over.
Vara later said Coggins smelled of alcohol and appeared drunk. Coggins, who said he'd had one beer, passed the sobriety tests.
Coggins said there was a palpable tension between him and the officers. He is black, and they are white.
Coggins said Vara started putting on a pair of black gloves. Coggins said he'd recently watched "Mississippi Burning," so he panicked and ran.
He took off down Jericho Turnpike and scrambled over a chain-link fence. As he ran, he said, he heard Buonora, yell, "Just shoot him! Shoot him in the back! Shoot him in the back!"
Coggins eluded the police and went home. The next day he turned himself in to the Third Precinct. There, he was charged with criminal possession of a weapon, a felony punishable by up to 7 years in prison, as well as resisting arrest and speeding.
Coggins, who worked at KeySpan and has no known criminal record, said he never had a gun.
In March 2005, Buonora testified before a grand jury that while chasing Coggins, he heard the clink of metal falling to the ground and then found a 9-mm pistol. Vara testified that he saw the gun on the ground.
However, court records show a Floral Park police officer came forward and said he was the one who'd found the gun. Another officer found a clip to a .25-caliber weapon, which did not match the gun.
Coggins' attorney, Frederick K. Brewington, said the gun was planted there by the Nassau officers. Coggins has a pending $10 million lawsuit against the county, Buonora, Vara and 12 other members of the Nassau police department.
The department denied the allegations in court papers.
The department opened an internal affairs investigation. Buonora, according to court records, said he gave the false testimony because "I thought I was helping the District Attorney with her case."
Vara admitted filing false paperwork and corroborated Coggins' recollection that Buonora yelled, "Just shoot him!" the internal investigation contained in court records shows.
The internal affairs report found that Buonora committed perjury. In November 2005, Buonora pleaded guilty to third-degree criminal perjury, a misdemeanor. He received a conditional discharge and $1,000 fine.
The internal affairs report said it was "undetermined" whether Vara committed perjury.
Both Vara and Buonora are still with the Nassau County Police Department. Buonora earned $135,076 and Vara earned $166,843 in the most recent budget year.
Buonora declined to comment. Vara did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: James Burke
Summary: Burke has been the subject of at least two internal affairs investigations, but they didn't stop his rise to the top of the Suffolk County Police Department.
Before becoming chief in January 2012, investigators found that Burke lost his gun twice and had a sexual relationship with a prostitute who sold drugs and committed larceny. The IA report concluded Burke engaged in conduct unbecoming an officer.
An earlier investigation alleged that he was stealing drugs from drug dealers, a charge investigators concluded was unfounded.
Burke started with the department in 1986. An active cop nicknamed "Starsky," he was promoted to sergeant in 1991.
Burke came to the attention of IA investigators in August 1993 amid allegations that he was consuming illegal drugs, taking drugs from dealers and failing to invoice them as police property. The drug use allegation was unfounded and the invoice accusation was found to be unsubstantiated, according to the internal affairs report.
The allegations led investigators to Lowrita Rickenbacker, who at the time had 27 arrests on her record. She had met Burke in May 1992 after a friend had a car accident. Burke seemed concerned for her, and they became friends, she told investigators.
They met occasionally over the next six months. He gave her small gifts, like roses and money for food -- which she admitted she used to buy crack cocaine -- and they engaged in oral sex in his patrol car, Rickenbacker said.
She told investigators he left his gun with her twice, which investigators found credible because she passed a polygraph test.
Burke told investigators that their relationship lasted six months and denied that she ever had his gun. He also said he didn't know she had a criminal record.
Investigators didn't find him credible.
"Given Sergeant Burke's forte for being aware of the criminal element in his patrol zone, and his intimate association with Lowrita Rickenbacker, his claim that he knew nothing of her activities or background seems disingenuous," the 1995 IA report states. "Her professed admiration and support for Sergeant Burke also lend credence to her account of the incidents she described."
The records don't indicate whether Burke was disciplined after the 1995 investigation.
He was promoted to lieutenant in 2000. Then in 2002, he moved to District Attorney Thomas Spota's office, where he led the police detectives squad. He remained in the district attorney's office until December 2011.
Earlier this year, Christopher Loeb claimed Burke punched him while they were alone in the Fourth Precinct after Loeb was arrested for allegedly stealing a gun belt, ammunition and other items from Burke's department-issued SUV.
Supreme Court Justice Martin Efman ruled Tuesday that Suffolk police violated Loeb's rights during his lengthy interrogation by not reminding him of his right to an attorney and to remain silent. The judge declined to address defense claims that Burke and detectives beat Loeb at the Fourth Precinct station house in Hauppauge where he was being held after his arrest on Dec. 14, 2012. Loeb, 27, is charged with possession of stolen property and drug crimes. He returns to court on Jan. 17.
Burke earned $227,474 in the most recent budget year. He did not respond to a request for comment.
Summary: Cappa was assigned to a traffic enforcement detail in October 2008 but deliberately failed to do it, according to departmental charges. Instead, he wrote two fake traffic summonses and later lied to his supervisor about them, according to departmental charges. He remained on the job.
Then in April 2011, departmental charges allege Cappa abandoned his post without permission and went to a liquor store. "He then drove his personal vehicle in a reckless and/or erratic manner, causing public alarm and causing unexplained damage to his vehicle before he was found in a possibly impaired condition while wearing his police uniform and officially on duty," the charges state.
After that incident, the department brought nine charges of misconduct against him for the fake traffic summonses, reckless driving, being found in an apparently intoxicated condition while driving, and failing to report the sale and purchase of a gun in October 2004.
The department suspended Cappa without pay in April 2011. After an arbitration hearing, the department terminated Cappa in January 2013.
He did not return calls for comment.
NAME: Robert Cardona
Summary: Cardona prepared two separate car accident reports containing factual errors and "substantively different versions" of what happened before and after an October 2007 accident, according to departmental charges. He was also charged with lying to internal affairs about it when he was interviewed a year later in November 2008.
Cardona acknowledged general misconduct and agreed to forfeit 12 days of accrued leave, department records show.
Cardona earned $134,218 in the most recent budget year. He did not return a call for comment.
NAME: Leonardo Carrasco
Summary: The department charged Carrasco with misconduct for posting a threatening comment on Newsday.com while on duty. The comment caused the subject of the article "alarm and fear," according to the November 2012 departmental charges.
Carrasco acknowledged that he engaged in conduct unbecoming an officer. The department suspended him without pay for a week, and Carrasco forfeited five days of accrued leave. He earned $135,993 in the most recent budget year.
Carrasco told a reporter he would not comment on his case because he does not trust Newsday.
"The organization that you work for is not very friendly to our profession, so I feel very uncomfortable speaking to someone about that because, quite honestly, I don't trust you," he said.
NAME: Thomas Collins
Summary: Police raided the Fraternal Order of Eagles clubhouse in Northport in November 2008 to break up an illegal poker game. Collins was at the game.
The department charged that from August through November 2008, Collins had failed to report ongoing criminal activity "of which he had direct knowledge." When asked about it in October 2008, Collins intentionally misled a supervisor who was investigating a complaint of criminal activity, according to the departmental charges.
Collins was suspended without pay for 10 days. He acknowledged general misconduct and was reinstated on Jan. 5, 2009. He was not criminally charged. While it is a crime in New York for the organizer of an illegal gambling operation to profit by keeping part of the pot or entry fees, it is not illegal to attend or play.
"As much as I would like to talk to you about that case, because it still bothers to me this day, I'm not allowed to," Collins said in a recent interview.
NAME: Terence Coughlin
Summary: Coughlin had reported that he was unable to work because of a medical condition. But the department charged that while on disability leave from June through September 2007, Coughlin engaged in unspecified activities that would tend to exacerbate his condition, according to the March 2008 departmental charges.
Coughlin retired on Oct. 20, 2008, a week before his scheduled arbitration hearing. The department terminated him anyway. He collects a $58,262 annual pension. He declined to comment.
NAME: Anthony DiLeonardo
Summary: A Nassau police department Internal Affairs Unit report found that DiLeonardo recklessly escalated a roadside verbal dispute when he shot at cabdriver Thomas Moroughan five times with a .38-caliber Smith & Wesson in February 2011. Moroughan was hit once in the left arm and once in the chest as his girlfriend sat beside him in the front seat. After shooting Moroughan, who was unarmed, DiLeonardo pistol-whipped him, breaking his nose, according to the report.
The report recommended 19 departmental charges for what it found to be 11 unlawful acts and eight departmental rules violations by DiLeonardo. It also recommended five departmental charges against Officer Edward Bienz, his barhopping companion that night, based on the investigation's findings that Bienz committed two unlawful acts and three counts of violating department rules. Both DiLeonardo and Bienz were off duty when they confronted Moroughan.
The department has declined to say whether DiLeonardo faced any discipline for his actions. He was not criminally charged. He remains on the job and made $109,510 in the most recent budget year.
His lawyer, Bruce Barket of Barket, Marion, Epstein & Kearon in Garden City, said: "The allegations against Anthony are just that. They are akin to an indictment. They are not findings."
Barket said he did not know the status of a Suffolk County grand jury convened to look into the case after Newsday reported on the internal affairs investigation in July. Suffolk district attorney spokesman Robert Clifford did not respond to questions about the status of the grand jury.
Barket said DiLeonardo would be vindicated. "We don't think he violated department policies and procedures."
NAME: Robert Dito
Summary: Dito told Robert Spatafora about pending raids at illegal gambling operations in exchange for discounted car repairs from a Ronkonkoma car repair shop, according to Suffolk prosecutors. Spatafora had previously been indicted on federal charges of illegal gambling and threatening a witness.
Police arrested Dito in October 2010 on charges of conspiracy to operate illegal gambling businesses, conspiracy to obstruct enforcement, computer trespass and official misconduct. The department suspended him without pay the same day, according to department records. Two days later, the department administratively charged Dito with misconduct for accessing the state Department of Motor Vehicles records without authorization. He was also charged with conduct unbecoming an officer for accepting discounted car repairs from August 2009 through February 2010 and for "tipping off and revealing the existence and execution of a search warrant," according to the departmental charges.
Dito retired in December 2010 with an $82,376 annual pension. He pleaded guilty to a federal charge of obstruction of law enforcement in June 2011. He is scheduled for sentencing in January 2014.
In an interview, Dito said he did not know about Spatafora's connections to organized crime and said he called him only because he didn't want him to lose money in the game.
"There was no association on my part with the mob," he said.
Dito said the last three years have been painful for him and his family and that what most bothers him is that his police friends have not spoken to him since his arrest.
"It hurts. I took a lot of pride in being a police officer. I like to think of myself as a good, honest cop. I just made a stupid mistake, and unfortunately, I'm paying for it," he said. "After doing 29 good years, you're remembered as a bad cop."
NAME: Daniel Dowsett
Summary: Dowsett has been named in three federal civil rights lawsuits alleging false arrests. Two were settled, and a jury found in favor of police in the third.
A suit by Patrick D. Fairhurst against Dowsett, another officer and the county alleged that the police officer arrested Fairhurst without any warrant or probable cause in December 2005. Fairhurst sued after the charges against him were dismissed. The case was settled for an undisclosed amount in 2009.
Nassau settled another suit in September 2011 that had been brought by Eric D. Gadson against the county, Dowsett and another officer, according to court records. Gadson alleged that he was falsely arrested and held at Nassau County Correctional Facility for three days in 2009. In December 2009, charges against Gadson were dismissed. The amount of the settlement was not disclosed.
Dowsett was among three officers sued, along with the county, in November 2000 by Frankel Jolivert, who represented himself. The suit alleged false arrest, malicious prosecution, illegal search and seizure and excessive force. A jury found in favor of the police and county in December 2004.
Dowsett made $191,858 in the most recent budget year. He declined to comment.
NAME: Erik Faltings
Summary: Court records show Faltings called Martin Tretola, the owner of T & T Gunnery in Seaford, and asked him to turn over a gun to a friend of his without the required paperwork. Tretola refused.
"Do you know who I am? I am the head of the Pistol Licensing Bureau of Nassau County," Faltings said, according to a lawsuit filed by Tretola against Faltings, the county, unnamed assistant district attorneys and five unnamed police officers.
"I do not care who you are. What you are asking of me is against the law, and I will not do it," Tretola replied.
A year later, Faltings coordinated a raid on the gun shop, enlisting the help of the Nassau fire marshal, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Town of Hempstead's building department and the Nassau Bomb Squad. Tretola was arrested and charged with reckless endangerment, and officials said Tretola was operating a makeshift gun range near a natural gas line.
In fact, the gas line had been disconnected for decades, court records said. The so-called gun range was a bullet trap, a device that safely absorbs bullets and their fragments for testing.
The criminal charges against Tretola were dismissed in February 2008.
Faltings then illegally opened Tretola's sealed criminal records and forwarded them to the Town of Hempstead, according to court papers, and refused to lift the suspension of Tretola's gun licenses, costing him the sale of more than 900 guns.
Tretola filed a lawsuit against Faltings and Nassau County, claiming he had been wrongfully arrested and maliciously prosecuted because of Faltings' harassment.
A jury agreed with Tretola, awarding him $3 million in compensatory damages and $2 million in punitive damages in August 2012.
Records show Faltings kept his job with the Nassau County Police Department, earning $213,494 in the most recent budget year.
Faltings did not return a message left with the department seeking comment.
NAME: John E. Fenelius and Scott P. Guido
Summary: Guido and Fenelius recovered stolen property and then disposed of it in the trash, which "wrongfully deprived the rightful owner of said property," according to departmental charges brought in April 2009. They also failed to invoice the property, and Guido did not make required entries in their memo books about it, the charges said. Fenelius submitted a false report, saying that the property had been returned to its owner, when it had not, the charges said.
Both men acknowledged general misconduct related to the internal affairs investigation. Guido and Fenelius each agreed to forfeit five days of accrued pay. Guido earned $148,821 and Fenelius earned $140,802 in the most recent budget year.
Fenelius declined to comment. Guido did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: Frank A. Ferrigno
Summary: In September 2009, the department agreed to allow Officer Frank A. Ferrigno to retire or face termination. "Failure to retire by Jan. 12, 2010, shall result in P.O. Ferrigno's immediate termination," the departmental charges state.
Although the nature of Ferrigno's misconduct is not stated in records, a signed stipulation and agreement resolved the investigation. The stipulation states that Ferrigno would be prohibited from possessing or purchasing any weapons during his remaining employment.
He collects a $66,670 annual pension.
Ferrigno declined to comment.
NAME: William Flanagan
Summary: Former Nassau police Second Deputy Commissioner Flanagan was sentenced to 60 days in jail and 3 months of community service in July after he was convicted of official misconduct for his role in returning stolen property to a school that had been burglarized by the son of a police benefactor. Former Deputy Chief of Patrol John Hunter and former Det. Sgt. Alan Sharpe were also charged in the case, in which prosecutors alleged that they tried to prevent school officials from pressing charges because of the father's police connections.
Prosecutors said Flanagan improperly used his influence to get police to return electronics equipment to John F. Kennedy High School in Bellmore in 2009 after Zachary Parker, the son of police benefactor Gary Parker, stole the items. Flanagan believed the school could be persuaded not to pursue charges against Parker once the equipment was returned. Gary Parker gave Flanagan two $100 gift cards to a Great Neck restaurant and a state-of-the-art flashlight.
A judge gave Flanagan his sentence in a standing-room-only court packed with supporters on July 15. Flanagan left the Mineola courtroom to huge applause. After the proceeding, a state appellate court stayed his jail sentence pending an appeal.
About 150 letters were written on Flanagan's behalf, including one from former Nassau Police Commissioner Lawrence Mulvey and another from Rep. Peter King, both of whom attended the sentencing.
Police never arrested Zachary Parker, but prosecutors later presented his case to a grand jury, which indicted him. He pleaded guilty to burglary charges and is serving 1 to 3 years in prison.
Flanagan retired in March 2012 with a $136,132 annual pension.
His lawyer, Bruce Barket of Barket, Marion, Epstein & Kearon in Garden City, said he plans to file an appeal in January. "We are confident that Bill's act of making an inquiry as to when and if the police were going to return stolen property they had recovered to the property's owner is not a criminal act. He will be exonerated."
NAME: Matthew Goodman
Summary: Goodman accessed the state's confidential DMV database for personal reasons and left his assigned post to loiter at a commercial establishment in Commack, despite warnings from a supervisor to stop, according to departmental charges.
Goodman acknowledged general misconduct and agreed in September 2011 to forfeit 20 days of accrued leave.
Goodman earned $151,127 in the most recent budget year. He declined to comment.
NAME: Kenneth F. Hamilton
Summary: At least seven citizen complaints -- six alleging excessive force -- have been lodged against Hamilton since he joined the department in 2002, according to an officer history log obtained by Newsday. One of those complaints was filed the day after Hamilton beat a suspect in April 2010 the officer said was combative and had fled police. The young man, 19-year-old Kevin Turner, later died from complications stemming from the injuries he suffered in the beating.
Internal investigations cleared Hamilton of misconduct in all the previous complaints made against him, although the officer history log indicates the most recent excessive force complaint is unresolved. In two federal lawsuits, settlements were paid to plaintiffs who claimed that Hamilton had been excessively violent with them.
Hamilton remains on the force and is seeking a line-of-duty disability retirement for injuries he says he suffered while apprehending Turner.
Records show he was paid $123,981 in the most recent budget year. Hamilton and his attorney did not respond to calls for comment.
NAME: Richard Hefferon
Summary: A security video caught Hefferon pointing a loaded gun at a Farmingdale bar manager's head while drinking off duty in April 2011.
After an internal affairs investigation, Hefferon was arrested in June 2011 and charged with reckless endangerment. He was also suspended without pay, and his guns were confiscated.
Hefferon pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of menacing and was sentenced to 150 hours of community service and a $500 fine. He also was ordered to continue substance-abuse therapy.
He remains on the job but will not be allowed to carry a gun for two years while off duty under the sentence imposed by District Court Judge Rhonda Fischer. He made $132,699 in the most recent budget year.
He declined to comment through his attorney, Robert McDonald.
NAME: John Hunter
Summary: Former Deputy Chief of Patrol Hunter pleaded guilty in May in Nassau County Court to misdemeanor counts of conspiracy and official misconduct. He was sentenced to probation.
Prosecutors alleged that Hunter, Second Deputy Commissioner William Flanagan and Det. Sgt. Alan Sharpe conspired to quash the arrest of Zachary Parker, a 21-year-old Merrick man, for stealing $11,000 in electronics from his alma mater, John F. Kennedy High School in Bellmore in 2009.
Hunter retired in March 2012 and collects a $145,545 annual pension.
His lawyer, William Petrillo of Rockville Centre, said, "He remains a mentor to many in law enforcement and continues to give back to the community in very charitable and private ways."
NAME: John Jeheber
Summary: Department records charged that Jeheber walked into a Babylon thrift store, dropped his shorts to his knees and rubbed "his crotch area in a suggestive manner," according to departmental charges brought in October 2012. He agreed to resign from the department seven months later.
In an interview, Jeheber said no criminal charges had been filed against him.
His attorney, Sasha Robins of Borrelli & Associates in Great Neck, said Jeheber has a skin condition and that he had an allergic reaction to clothing he was trying on in the dressing room. She said the PBA pressured him into signing a stipulation to resolve the charges.
NAME: Jonelle Jones
Summary: Jones tried use his position as a police officer to get into a strip club with an underage woman and then got into a fight with the bouncers in March 2009, according to departmental charges. Asked about the incident a year later by internal affairs investigators, Jones "was not truthful," the charges said.
Jones acknowledged general misconduct and agreed in August 2010 to forfeit two days of accrued leave. He earned $154,929 in the most recent budget year. He did not return a call for comment.
NAME: William Kaul
Summary: Nassau police arrested Kaul, a detective sergeant and supervisor of the Sixth Squad, in January 2010 for drinking on duty and causing a crash that injured another driver. The department suspended Kaul for 30 days without pay and then allowed him to return to administrative duties. He retired in March 2010 and collects an $80,966 annual pension.
Kaul was charged criminally with official misconduct, obstructing governmental administration and leaving the scene of an accident. In April 2012, he pleaded guilty to official misconduct in that he failed to sign off duty as required. He received a conditional discharge and $500 fine.
His lawyer, William Petrillo of Rockville Centre, said, "Bill is an absolute family man, enjoying retired life and is pleased to have put this case behind him."
NAME: Michael Knatz
Summary: Knatz has been named in three federal civil rights suits. Two are pending, and one was settled for $15 million, according to court records.
Thomas Hartmann sued Knatz, Officer Karl Snelders and other Nassau officers after Snelders drove his police car into Hartmann in March 2004. Hartmann, a Long Beach construction worker, had been accused of threatening his ex-wife and officers. Knatz was a passenger in Snelders' car.
Hartmann had no weapons and lost his right leg, according to court records. A jury awarded Hartmann $19.6 million, and the county settled for $15 million, according to court records.
In a second case, Lawrence Rose sued Nassau County and Knatz in 2012 for illegal search and false arrest after Rose was arrested and charged with criminal possession of a weapon when police found a disassembled gun in his trunk in May 2010. Rose said he had a Pennsylvania gun permit for it and that it was an illegal search. The case is pending. In court papers, the county denied the allegations.
In a third case, Knatz is one of 17 cops sued by Seemona Sumasar, whose ex-boyfriend Jerry Ramrattan framed her for a robbery she did not commit. She spent seven months in jail on the false charges. Knatz and another officer arrested her.
When Queens Judge Richard L. Buchter sentenced Ramrattan to 32 years in prison, he chastised the Nassau cops, saying, "You wouldn't have to be Sherlock Holmes to discover something fishy." He also said the Nassau officers had been "duped by liars, of whom they had a right to be suspicious."
According to Sumasar's lawsuit, officers did not tell her why she was being arrested and lied to her friend about where they were taking her. The case is pending. In court papers, the county denied the allegations.
Knatz made $208,212 in the most recent budget year. He did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: Lonny M. Krimsky
Summary: The department in February 2011 charged that Krimsky lied to internal affairs when he denied knowing who wrote certain letters to a civilian, or the contents of the letters. No further details are provided about the incident.
The following month, the department charged him with three counts of misconduct after he instructed his children to lie to police and Child Protective Services, "embellished the facts of a pending police investigation to the District Attorney's office" and used department computers to access information about his estranged wife and her boyfriend.
Krimsky acknowledged general misconduct and agreed to forfeit five days of accrued leave, the records show.
Krimsky made $138,888 in the most recent budget year. He did not respond to a request for an interview placed through the department.
NAME: Nicholas Lemma
Summary: Lemma, a detective, did not tell anyone that a Queens teenager charged with armed robbery could not have committed the crime because he was already in jail on another charge, according to court records.
In March 2005, police arrested Raheem Crews on armed robbery charges in Roosevelt. At the time of the robbery, Crews, then 19, was in jail on a criminal mischief charge.
Although Lemma obtained that information from a police computer, "I kept it to myself and said, 'Let the chips fall where they may,' " he said in a deposition that is part of Crews' civil lawsuit alleging unlawful arrest and prosecution that is pending against the county.
The charges against Crews were dismissed.
In court papers, the county has denied the lawsuit's allegations.
Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice appointed a special prosecutor to investigate the case after Crews' attorney, Frederick Brewington, referred it to her office.
Lemma was arrested in January 2010 and charged with official misconduct and obstructing governmental administration. There is no record of a disposition in the case.
Lemma had already retired at the time of his arrest. He collects a $73,061 annual pension.
He declined to comment.
NAME: Patrick Looney
Summary: After responding to a domestic violence incident in July 2008, Looney had the victim sign police paperwork and then later inserted her "statement of allegations," according to departmental charges. Looney made "a false verbal communication" when asked about how he prepared the statement by internal affairs investigators. An arbitrator determined in April 2010 that Looney should forfeit eight days of accrued pay, department records show.
The department charged Looney with misconduct again two months later for establishing an "inappropriate relationship" with someone he had arrested. Departmental charges allege he also used the police computer to make 136 data requests about someone and left his assigned sector to loiter at a private residence "for other than official police business." Looney acknowledged general misconduct and in April 2011 agreed to forfeit 30 days of accrued leave.
Looney earned $137,053 in the most recent budget year. He did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: Joseph Lynch
Summary: The Nassau District Attorney's Special Investigations Bureau found in 2005 that Lynch had been stopping motorists without probable cause, usually late in his shift, so that he could arrest them for drunken driving and boost his overtime.
"Members of the Internal Affairs Unit have indeed observed Lynch stopping vehicles without having a reasonable basis for doing so. It appears as if the vast majority of drivers were young people," the 2005 IA report states. "All of this activity leads us to the conclusion that Lynch, in many instances, was stopping vehicles without having an adequate basis for doing so, in an effort to fish for individuals who had been drinking."
The department assigned him to desk duty.
In 2008, the department put him back on patrol. Records show he earned more than $190,000 in 2010 and of that, about $52,000 -- or more than a quarter of his compensation -- was overtime pay.
After new complaints emerged about Lynch's stops in 2011, the DA's office released an internal investigation that examined 12 arrests he made and included surveillance reports. The report did not recommend criminal charges.
"Separate and apart from this determination, however, it does appear as if Lynch is stopping drivers without having an adequate basis for doing so in various instances. Thus we should refer our findings to the Internal Affairs Unit of the Nassau County Police Department for whatever administrative action it deems appropriate," the DA's report says.
In one instance, Lynch stopped a van driven by internal affairs investigators. When they asked him why they had been stopped, he said they were speeding. They replied that they had been driving only 30 mph. Lynch responded that it was an unsafe speed for the road conditions but let them go.
Lynch retired in 2011 after the new complaints emerged about his traffic stops. He collects a $121,452 annual pension.
He did not return a call for comment.
NAME: Garrett Mannerz
Summary: Mannerz stopped a car in February 2011 with three women in it in East Meadow. After giving field sobriety tests to the driver, he ordered a passenger out of the car, commented on her attire and asked for her telephone number, according to a November 2011 news release from Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice.
He told the woman if she "did something for him," he would allow the driver to leave without being charged criminally or getting a summons, the news release said. Mannerz then grabbed the woman's waist and made her touch him sexually, and the women left the scene, the news release said. Within two hours, Mannerz made a series of sexually suggestive phone calls to the woman; she taped one of them and brought it to police, according to the news release.
Prosecutors charged Mannerz with bribe receiving, coercion and official misconduct. Mannerz pleaded guilty to official misconduct in November 2011 and resigned from the force. Judge John Kase ordered him to serve 80 hours of community service and granted him a conditional discharge, the news release said.
His lawyer, William Petrillo of Rockville Centre, said, "Garret and his family have relocated, and he is sorry for any embarrassment he caused the police department."
NAME: Dennis Mannix
Summary: Mannix, a detective, did not safeguard jewelry recovered in a 2009 burglary investigation, and the jewelry was "lost or stolen due to his failure," according to departmental charges brought in August 2011. Mannix then faked paperwork and did not put the burglary incident into the department's computer system, concealing the facts from his supervisors for more than a year, the charges said. He was also accused of concealing from the district attorney's office that the jewelry was missing and misleading the victim of the burglary as to the status of her property.
Mannix acknowledged general misconduct, forfeited 60 days of accrued leave and was placed on a two-year probationary period where additional misconduct could result in "a suitable penalty," according to department records. He remains on the job and earned $179,539 in the most recent budget year.
He did not return a call for comment.
NAME: Michael Milton
Summary: The department charged Sgt. Milton with misconduct in August 2012 after he arrested photojournalist Philip Datz for obstructing governmental administration after he filmed a crime scene on a public street in Bohemia, according to department and court records.
Datz was filming the crime scene in July 2012 and did not cross police lines or interfere with police activity, according to a civil lawsuit filed in federal court against Milton and the county. After Milton told him to stop filming, Datz asked him where to move. Milton refused to direct him anywhere, so Datz moved a block away and resumed filming from a public street next to other bystanders, the lawsuit said. Milton drove his patrol car directly at Datz, seized his camera and arrested him, according to Datz's unedited video of the incident.
Assistant Suffolk County Attorney Richard Dunne denied the allegations in a response to Datz's lawsuit.
The resolution of Milton's misconduct charges is unclear. He made $176,366 in the most recent budget year. Milton did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
Milton's attorney, Brian Davis of Garden City, said the incident was minor. He said his client would likely face the loss of some accrued leave and possibly a fine. "And that's all that this case merits," he said.
He said Milton had no intention of hitting Datz with his car or intimidating him and has been retrained. "It was the classic white heart, empty head," Davis said.
"Under the circumstances, Sergeant Milton believed he was doing the right thing," Davis said. "He thought he was protecting the identities of the undercover officers."
NAME: Vincent Muscarnera
Summary: Nassau Insp. Muscarnera crashed his police cruiser after leaving a colleague's retirement party in Williston Park in July 2006, police said after the accident. Police at the scene did not take a blood sample from him, but internal affairs later reviewed the incident, according to an Aug. 2, 2006, Newsday story.
Nassau prosecutors used a search warrant to test blood taken from the injured inspector at the hospital that showed his blood-alcohol level was .21 percent, more than twice the legal limit of .08, police officials told Newsday after the accident.
The department suspended him for 30 days. He was reinstated in September 2006 but remained out on sick leave, police officials told Newsday at the time. His attorney, Brian Davis of Garden City, said the department also fined him roughly $40,000 of his termination pay.
State records show he retired in February 2007 with a $134,133 annual pension.
He pleaded guilty to driving while impaired and reckless endangerment. In the December 2007 plea agreement, a judge sentenced Muscarnera to 3 years' probation and community service, according to a Sept. 7, 2007, report on the court hearing.
Davis said, "He's a gentleman. It really destroyed his career because you don't want to go out the way he went out."
NAME: Nicholas Nigro
Summary: Departmental charges against Nigro from April 2009 show the detective failed to open a narcotics investigation after he obtained cocaine from a civilian and that he brought alcohol into his department-issued vehicle more than once. Nigro was also charged with harassing his neighbors from August 2007 through March 2008. The department charged Nigro again in September 2009, saying he used a police computer to access IRS information about his next-door neighbor.
In May 2010, the department demoted Nigro to police officer. Less than nine months later, the department brought three more misconduct charges against him for intentionally burying his neighbor's car with his snowblower. He was suspended without pay in February 2011 and retired the same day. He collects an $87,305 annual pension.
Nigro declined to comment.
NAME: James E. O'Hagan and James Spoerel
Summary: O'Hagan and Spoerel "failed to give due care and attention to the complainant and complaint" and did a "careless investigation" in response to a March 2011 call, according to departmental charges.
After a hearing, the officers each acknowledged general misconduct and agreed to forfeit 25 days of accrued leave. Both remain on the job. In the most recent budget year, O'Hagan made $150,657 and Spoerel $150,021.
NAME: Anthony Raymond
Summary: An Elmont minister was in his home when he heard gunshots a little after 3 a.m. in December 1995. He went to his window and watched a police officer fire two shots into the body of a man lying on the ground offering no resistance, according to his testimony in a civil case five years later. The only motions the man made were "two twitches" as the bullets hit him, he testified.
The man was 28-year-old Christopher Wade, a parolee who had served time for a drug-related offense. Nassau Police Officer Raymond had stopped Wade on suspicion of buying drugs. He said he opened fire after Wade pointed a gun at him.
A police department review of the incident found that Raymond fired 16 shots, including some after he reloaded his weapon when his gun jammed. Nine of the bullets tore into Wade's chest, arms, kidney, shoulder, liver, lungs and head. Wade died at the scene with no drugs found in his possession.
Wade's family insisted he had not been armed and that he had just gone out to buy cigarettes. Raymond handed in a loaded .32-caliber Smith & Wesson revolver that he said he had kicked out of Wade's hand. Tests showed that it had not been fired and bore no fingerprints, according to a Feb. 5, 1997, Newsday account of the case.
Five months after the shooting, a Nassau grand jury cleared Raymond of any wrongdoing.
In a subsequent federal lawsuit filed by Wade's family against the police department and Raymond, the department produced personnel documents showing Raymond had been the subject of 19 civilian complaints during his tenure with the NYPD before joining the Nassau force. The complaints, which ranged from the use of racial slurs to assault, were all ruled unsubstantiated.
Raymond also had been arrested twice, according to news accounts of the case. First in 1982, when he was 18 and working as a gas station attendant. He was charged with stealing $250 in receipts from the gas station and falsely reporting that there had been a robbery. The charges were dismissed.
Then in 1989, while Raymond was still with the NYPD, a Queens grand jury indicted him on official misconduct charges in connection with an on-duty altercation at a bar. The indictment was later dismissed.
Despite those issues, the Nassau police department hired Raymond in 1994, a year before he shot Wade.
When the Wade family's civil rights lawsuit went to trial five years after the shooting, Raymond testified that he had felt his life was in danger. The jury disagreed, and in December 2000, awarded Wade's family $2.25 million.
Frederick K. Brewington, the Wade family's attorney, prepared another claim against Nassau County, arguing that it had been negligent in hiring Raymond, given his prior arrests and civilian complaints. However, the family offered to withdraw the suit if the county agreed to set up an independent civilian review board to further investigate complaints against officers that are deemed unsubstantiated by the police department.
The county's attorneys said the county had done nothing wrong in hiring Raymond and rejected the offer. The court later dismissed the family's second suit.
In subsequent years, Raymond was named as a defendant in four more federal lawsuits alleging excessive force. In two cases, juries ruled in favor of the police and a third ended in a judge's dismissal. A fourth suit, filed in 2009 against Nassau County, Raymond and five other officers, was settled with a $255,000 payment to the plaintiff Louis Martire, according to Gregory Calliste Jr., Martire's attorney.
Martire alleged that Raymond and other officers severely beat him when he was arrested and jailed after a fight at a family wedding in September 2008. Martire claimed police punched him in the back, kicked and kneed him in the ribs, slammed his head against a bench and left him lying in a pool of blood.
Because disciplinary actions against officers are not public, it is unclear whether Raymond faced departmental discipline in connection with any of the incidents for which he was sued.
State records do show, however, that he remained on the job until March 2012, when he retired. He collects a $123,303 annual pension.
Raymond did not respond to a request for an interview made through the police department.
NAME: Alan Sharpe
Summary: Former Det. Sgt. Sharpe is awaiting trial on misdemeanor charges in connection with the Zachary Parker case. Prosecutors charge that Sharpe, former Second Deputy Commissioner William Flanagan and former Deputy Chief of Patrol John Hunter conspired to quash Parker's arrest for a burglary at a high school because his father contributed heavily to the Nassau police foundation. They allegedly pressured the school's principal not to press charges.
Sharpe retired in January 2012 and collects a $96,242 annual pension. He did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: Raymond Smith
Summary: The department filed 32 charges of misconduct against Smith in February 2008 for allegedly emailing reporters on a police computer and expressing his opinion about certain department policies. He also used the department computer to surf the Internet and to send personal emails, including one to an off-duty Suffolk lieutenant to talk about his department charges that contained a profanity, according to the departmental charges.
The department suspended Smith for 30 days without pay. He retired a month later.
He filed a federal lawsuit against the department alleging that he was singled out for discipline. The suit claims the department violated Smith's First Amendment rights by launching a full-scale internal affairs investigation, serving him with disciplinary charges, reassigning him to a lower-paying administrative position, suspending him without pay and eventually forcing him into retirement.
The lawsuit says then-Commissioner Richard Dormer offered to drop all charges if Smith would retire.
Smith also complains in the lawsuit that he was unable to work overtime before his retirement because of his reassignment.
"It is common practice for police officers contemplating retirement to work midnight and overtime in order to increase their base salary and, as a result, their pension," the lawsuit says.
Smith's annual pension is $85,180. He did not respond to a request for an interview made through his attorney.
The court dismissed his lawsuit, but Smith is appealing.
In a recent interview, Smith said he felt his First Amendment rights were violated.
"I was talking to reporters, so they were going to suspend me? Excuse me, I expressed an opinion," Smith said. "I was commenting on what I read in the paper. It's not like I was releasing inside information."
NAME: Karl Snelders
Summary: Snelders has been sued three times in federal court, with each settled in favor of the plaintiffs for a total of more than $15.1 million.
In March 2004, Snelders drove his police car into Thomas Hartmann after Hartmann allegedly reached into his waistband, as if he had a weapon. Hartmann had no weapons and lost his right leg, according to court records.
Snelders revealed in a deposition that there had been "seven or eight" complaints against him for excessive force, including an incident where he broke a suspect's jaw with a punch and earned the nickname "The Hammer." A federal jury in Brooklyn in February 2010 awarded Hartmann $16.6 million. The county later settled for $15 million.
In a second case, Stephan Frazier alleged that he was falsely arrested in July 2003 and later convicted based on the false testimony of Snelders and two other Nassau cops. The case was settled for an undisclosed amount.
A third case, filed in 1997, was settled for $99,999.
In 2004, Paul Macri sued Snelders for negligence related to a car accident. The case was settled before trial for an undisclosed amount.
Snelders, who is still on the force, made $182,610 in the most recent budget year. He did not return a call for comment.
NAME: Michael Tedesco
Summary: A Massapequa resident complained that a police patrol car sometimes spent hours at a time parked in a neighbor's driveway. The patrol car belonged to Tedesco, who parked in the driveway of Tara Obenaur so he could have sex with her while on the job, according to a Dec. 12, 2012, Newsday account of the case.
Prosecutors would later say Tedesco spent at least 80 of his shifts with more than one mistress. His actions could have been identified if the department had analyzed the GPS system in all county police cars. But under a 2007 agreement with the union, the department is barred from using the GPS in patrol cars to initiate discipline against any officer.
Prosecutors brought a 109-count indictment against Tedesco in December 2012, charging him with tampering with public and business records and official misconduct. He allegedly told supervisors he was on his way to crime scenes when he wasn't, and he once waited six minutes before leaving to help a man having a heart attack, Newsday reported. If convicted, Tedesco faces up to 7 years in prison.
Tedesco, who retired in April 2012, collects a $89,176 annual pension.
His attorney, Bruce Barket of Barket, Marion, Epstein & Kearon in Garden City, said the trial will take place sometime next year.
"Officer Tedesco, while he was an officer, was one of the more well respected, active officers in his precinct, so much so he received commendations and he was slotted to be moved to highway patrol, which statistically is done for better officers," Barket said. "You can say he shouldn't have been involved with mistresses. You can't say he wasn't doing his job."
NAME: Kerri Tennis
Summary: Tennis brought an "intoxicant" to work and consumed it while on duty at Suffolk's Pistol Licensing Bureau, according to departmental charges.
"On March 18, 2009, Police Officer Tennis #3603 was on duty while her ability to perform her assigned duty was impaired by the use of an intoxicant," the department charges state.
The department suspended Tennis for a month without pay in March 2009.
Tennis retired in April 2012 and collects a $78,558 annual pension. She declined to comment.
NAME: Robert Trotta
Summary: Trotta, a detective, received a rare rebuke from a federal judge after he tried to persuade a prisoner he was transporting in January 2007 to fire his attorney and accept a plea deal of 18 years in prison, according to court records. The conversation was recorded.
The prisoner, Rodney Morrison, faced charges stemming from an alleged multimillion-dollar cigarette bootlegging operation on the Poospatuck Indian Reservation in Mastic. He would later tell the court he had been influenced by Trotta's advice. As a result, Morrison said he'd made incriminating statements later to prosecutors.
U.S. District Judge Denis Hurley said Trotta exhibited "egregious behavior" that "interfered with Morrison's relationship with his attorneys." Hurley said Trotta and another detective had "tried to use their time alone with defendant, i.e. absent his attorneys, to convince him that he had no chance of prevailing at trial and accordingly, he should accept the government's plea offer lest he spend the rest of his life in jail, or possibly, receive the death penalty."
Hurley did not allow the government to use Morrison's incriminating statements against him. Morrison was convicted in 2008 on two charges of bootlegging and gun possession but acquitted of conspiracy to commit murder, arson, extortion and robbery. Hurley sentenced Morrison to 10 years in prison but ordered a retrial in November because a possible bribe offer to a juror had potentially tainted deliberations.
Trotta kept his assignment on a federal gang task force until August 2012, when he and two other detectives were transferred to precincts.
Over the course of his career, Trotta has been sued seven times in federal court and once in state court. Of the seven federal civil rights cases, one was withdrawn, two were administratively closed, three were dismissed and one is pending.
In the last case, filed in September 2012, Aboubacar Diallo alleges that Trotta illegally seized $16,503 from him after other officers stopped his truck. Diallo was not charged with any crime. The county attorney's office, which is defending Trotta, has denied the allegation.
Trotta ran as a Republican and Conservative from Fort Salonga for the Suffolk County Legislature in the most recent election and won. He declined to comment.
NAME: Edwin Trujillo
Summary: Nassau police arrested Hofstra student Michael Fonte in November 2002 on charges of slashing another man with a knife in a bar fight. But two witnesses told Trujillo, a detective, that Fonte didn't do it, according to court records. A third said he saw another man with a knife. And the victim who initially fingered Fonte said two weeks later he was no longer sure, the court records said.
Fonte, who had no known criminal record, insisted he didn't do it. However, the case against him was presented to a grand jury.
At least one witness statement exonerating Fonte was not presented to the grand jury, and when Fonte's attorney, William Kephart, was given the witness statements on the eve of trial in March 2004, he demanded that the case be re-presented to the grand jury, he said in an interview. According to court papers, the Nassau district attorney's office refused. After a judge ordered that the case be presented again, the charges against Fonte were dismissed.
Fonte later sued the county, police department, district attorney's office, four assistant district attorneys, Trujillo and five other unnamed people. He won a settlement of $88,500.
Fonte, who is now married with a family and living in Westbury, said the case still haunts him. His father died before it was resolved and whenever he starts a new job, he has to fill out paperwork to explain it.
For Trujillo, it wasn't his first case of arresting the wrong man.
In 2002, the Nassau district attorney's office opened an investigation into allegations that Trujillo, then a homicide detective, coerced a false confession from Jose Anibal Martinez. As a result, Martinez spent five months in jail on a manslaughter charge.
In an interview at the time, Martinez said Trujillo slapped him and yelled at him, making him afraid to not sign the statement, even though it was false. Trujillo said he had been "stewing" about the allegations but declined to make any further comments.
While Martinez was in jail, police obtained information in October 2001 that he was not the killer. However, the prosecution did not turn over that information until the real killer was arrested in January 2002, according to court papers.
Martinez sued Nassau County, the department, Trujillo and 11 other police officials, and the case was settled for an undisclosed amount.
Trujillo has also been named as a defendant in two other federal civil rights cases. One was filed by Santos Castillo against the department, Trujillo and other officers in 2001. The other, alleging civil rights violations, was filed by Jarol Escobar against the department, Trujillo and other officers in 1999. Both were settled for undisclosed amounts.
Trujillo still works for the department. He made $188,521 in the most recent budget year. He did not respond to a request for an interview placed with the department.
Summary: A Suffolk officer, whose name is redacted in documents, continued cashing government-subsidized rent checks for three months from August through October 2010 after the tenant of his rental property had died, according to departmental charges. The officer is accused of then altering dates on a county police report he submitted to the Community Development Corp. of Long Island, which distributes federal rent money. He was caught in a routine check and paid the money back, Community Development Corp. officials said. They did not refer the case for criminal charges. According to the March 2012 department records, he "pled guilty to general misconduct" and agreed to forfeit 10 days of accrued leave.
Summary: The department brought 13 charges of misconduct against a Third Precinct officer, whose name is redacted in documents, in October 2012 for failing to investigate or report a case of suspected child abuse in June 2011 and lying to internal affairs about it. The officer also failed to complete required police paperwork and "entered erroneous information, inaccurate names and false information into a field report," according to departmental charges. Finally, he treated the complainant and witnesses "in an unprofessional, rude and dismissive manner," according to departmental charges.
The resolution of the charges is not indicated.
Summary: A Second Precinct officer, whose name is redacted in records, was accused of using "illegal drugs and / or steroids," associating with a drug dealer and lying to internal affairs about it on January 2012, according to September 2012 departmental charges. The resolution of those charges is not indicated.
"Police Officer (name redacted) did lie to superior officers of the Suffolk County Police Department during an Internal Affairs Bureau interview, on Jan. 19, 2012, when he knowingly made false statements about owing money to a member of the public and the nature of the text messages contained in his personal cellphone," departmental charges state.
The officer was also charged with lying when he denied knowledge of the arrest of a member of the public and for improperly attempting to influence the disposition of a traffic summons.
NAME: Giacomo Viola
Summary: Police incident records show that while parking his truck in a Ronkonkoma parking lot in December 2007, Joseph Rinaldi nearly hit a Lexus owned by Joseph Romano.
Romano ran over and punched Rinaldi, according to three witnesses, one of whom was an off-duty Nassau police lieutenant. Rinaldi, owner of a medical gas installation company, didn't hit him back, police records of the incident show.
Romano left the scene and returned with his girlfriend's uncle, who identified himself as an off-duty NYPD cop, according to police records.
When Viola arrived at the scene, he refused to arrest Romano, take witness statements or write out an accident report, according to departmental charges. Rinaldi insisted that Romano be arrested, but Viola refused and told Rinaldi that if he didn't back off, he'd be arrested, according to Rinaldi's witness statement taken nearly a month later.
Rinaldi needed 20 stitches at Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center, emergency physician records entered into the court file show. Frustrated by the police inaction, Rinaldi and his wife went to the precinct several times to complain.
"They kept saying it wasn't an assault," Rinaldi said in a recent interview with Newsday. "We just kept going back, kept hearing no. Finally, I guess I was persistent enough and got to speak to a detective."
In January 2008, another police officer, Michael Barr, arrested Romano on assault charges and took witness statements, according to District Court records. Romano pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 40 days in jail and a five-year order of protection, according to court records.
Four months later, the department charged Viola with misconduct for failing to make an arrest, despite probable cause, failing to obtain evidence at the scene of a physical assault and failing to complete an accident report, according to the departmental charges brought in April 2009.
To settle the charges, Viola agreed to forfeit one day of accrued leave. Viola made $175,590 in the most recent budget year. He did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.
NAME: Thomas Welsh
Summary: Police arrested Welsh in April 2012 on charges that he shoplifted $40 worth of baby food, using plastic bags and a bungee cord wrapped around his body. He was suspended without pay for 30 days. A judge agreed to dismiss the case against him and seal the file in June 2012.
In a June 2012 interview with Newsday, Welsh's wife said her husband had been taking more than a dozen medications, including painkillers, after surgery from an on-the-job injury. She said he "was not in his right mind."
Welsh retired in October 2012 and currently collects a $97,697 annual pension. He did not respond to a request for comment placed through the department.