Thursday, April 8, 2010

the daily trifecta [an omnibus verdiction]

NYLJ 8-01-07


1. & 3. & 4.

Naw, naw, sure sure—everybody knows about the Louima case. Volpe and Schwartz got the can and Bruder and Wiese got canned. For the cover up. Yeah, yeah, they had fine records up to then but, hey!—HEY!—when you get caught in a shitstorm, nobody comes out smellin’ like a rose, y’know?

What do you mean what do I mean? Huh? Huh? Conspiracy to obstruct the Grand Jury--am I right or am I right? Sure, sure, reversed by the 2nd circuit. There was no—I repeat—no evidence Bruder ever testified before the Grand Jury or had been put on notice that his statements might be put before the Grand Jury. So the conviction couldn’t stand, couldn’t stand the weather. Same-o, same-o for Wiese—charges were based on a conspiracy theory so it was just as faulty. See, see, they may have fixed up their stories and that’s a safe bet, you bet. But it only wins on appeal, draw the moral point and loses on anything in the public sector. Like, like—they agreed to mislead, and that’s the deed that did impede investigators, sooner or later.

And the-th-the-th-that’s all folks! “Technically exonerated is hardly vindicated,” that’s what the judge put in her opinion. “Tainted for the purposes of regaining their positions,” no sale, no way.

Now them, now here’s the flipside of that, almost an ‘inspired by the events of’ or ‘taken from the true story’ or ‘ripped from today’s headlines’ type’a deal. Like Albany saw the writing off the wall , on the city’s dicta, and got with the program. The Appellate Division’s 3rd Dept. said that State, mind you, State troopers do not have a right to be represented by counsel during preliminary investigation interviews, even if that were to lead to subsequent disciplinary proceedings.

Yah, yah, pretty rough, pretty rough! But the presiding justice said that there are enough safeguards built into the critical incident inquiry that troopers are protected. From what, you say, form what? Self-incrimination—the root word of that being “crime”. When the protocols changed in 2005 to isolate the intake interview from being shared with other investigations makes it almost blood kin to attorney-client privilege.

The governor just signed legislation which the trooper’s union thinks would tip the scales back again. Takes it back to basic black and white, prohibiting a public employer from denying union or legal rep to any employee if “it reasonably appears they may be the subject of a disciplinary action.” But that’s the other side, the other side of Albany.

And right, right. It isn’t the same Gubenator who has to have the ethics commission look into whether key aides were tracking the state senate majority leader to see what kind of dirt they could dish on him? Using the same radar gun as the boys behind the billboards to clock his limo and jet hours instead of those guys in the Porsche rockets on the Parkway? And if that don’t put the irony in the nail, the nail in the coffin, here’s the capper: they wanted to use the state AG as a special prosecutor on the deal, even after he’d said no laws were broken, no broker will call. Bent? Ask the commission on Public Integrity, ok? It came on line September 22nd and its set to be helmed by the dean of Fordham Law so it don’t squeak, being oiled by character, and not because its dirty, see? Same guy who was responsible for getting the Ethics Commission together in 1987. The balliwick here is going to be Public Officers Law Section SS 73 (on a gift acceptance and after-civil job placement) SS 73(a) on financial disclosure and SS74, the code of Ethics, everybody’s favorite.

Get the picture, get the picture?

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