Current Union News

Current Union News (137)

The Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office has reviewed most of the cases of NYPD Det. Louis Scarcella and has thus far come to the conclusion that he did not engage in any alleged misconduct. In response to the Brooklyn DA’s admission thus far, Detectives’ Endowment Association, Inc. President Michael J. Palladino released the following statement:

 

“The Brooklyn District Attorney’s brief finally articulates what we suspected all along. Drowning in controversy, former District Attorney Charles Hynes tried to use Detective Scarcella as his life preserver by tarnishing long-retired Det. Scarcella’s reputation and the reputation of the entire NYPD by wrongfully accusing him of misconduct on his many cases. This has caused Det. Scarcella and his family much pain and distress over the past five years. Now, Scarcella’s reputation must be restored.”

 

Paragraph 49, found on pages 28-29 from the 63-page “Affirmation in Opposition to Motion to Vacate Judgment” in the case The People of The State of New York vs. Shawn Williams, Defendant, states: “The Conviction Review Unit of the King’s County District Attorney’s Office (“C.R.U.”) has completed review of the forty-one other cases in which Detective Scarcella was involved in the police investigation. In thirty-four of those forty-one cases, the District Attorney’s Office has concluded that it will defend the conviction. In the other seven of those forty-one cases the District Attorney’s Office has consented to vacatur of the judgment of conviction. In each of those forty-one cases, the decision of the District Attorney’s Office regarding whether to defend the conviction or consent to vacatur was based on consideration of all of the facts and circumstances of the case. In each of the seven cases in which Detective Scarcella was involved in the police investigation and in which the District Attorney’s Office has consented to vacatur of the judgment of conviction – namely, the cases of Robert Hill, Darryl Austin, Alvena Jennette, Roger Logan, Vanessa Gathers, Carlos Davis, and Derrick Hamilton – the decision to consent to vacatur was for reasons not related to any alleged misconduct by Detective Scarcella. In addition, in another case in which Detective Scarcella was involved in the police investigation – the case of David Ranta – the District Attorney’s Office, before the creation of the C.R.U. in its current form, also consented to vacatur the judgment of conviction; but in that case, too, the decision to consent to vacatur was for reasons not related to any alleged misconduct by Detective Sacarcella.”  [Vacatur is Latin for “vacated.”]

 

Louis Scarcella joined the New York Police Department in 1973. He was promoted to Detective in December of 1981, earned second grade in March of 1988, and was promoted to first grade Detective in December of 1993. He retired from the Brooklyn North Homicide Squad in March of 1999. Scarcella’s brother was also a Police Officer, as was their father Dominick. Dominick Scarcella joined the force in 1955 and retired as a Detective in 1982. He passed away in 2003.

 

Scarcella has been forced to bear five years of public humiliation after the former Brooklyn DA propagated unfounded charges about his integrity, resulting in a review of his cases, which included the aforementioned convictions. Cases are still being reviewed, but it is suspected the investigation will conclude shortly.

 

Statement from Det. Michael J. Palladino

President, Detectives’ Endowment Association, Inc.

Regarding New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito celebrating the terrorist Oscar Lopez Rivera

 

“When elected, the Speaker took an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States and Viverito violates that oath every time she celebrates this terrorist. On behalf of the cops he injured and civilians he killed, I condemn the Speaker for her words and actions. Any politician who embraces evil and terror has no business holding office in this country.”

 

May 30th marks the 15th anniversary of the end of the nine-month rescue, recovery and relief efforts at the World Trade Center site. On May 30, the 9/11 Memorial Museum will recognize this historic effort with a tribute in the Museum’s Foundation Hall. The tribute will also include a moment of silence in remembrance of all those who have died from 9/11-related illnesses.

 

To learn more about the May 30th tribute and other commemorative activities being held in recognition of the 15th anniversary of the nine-month recovery effort, and possibly to reserve free admission tickets, please click the link below:

 

https://www.911memorial.org/rescue-and-recovery-worker-recognition?utm_source=iContact&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=National%20September%2011%20Memorial%20&%20Museum&utm_content=May+30+-+Final

On April 6, 2017, the DEA, LBA, and CEA collectively filed a “Demand for Bargaining” notice with the City regarding the Body Camera Differential. The letter included a deadline date of April 14th for the City to respond. On April 13th, the City agreed to meet with the unions. If the City had not responded, it would have led to the unions filing an improper practice.

The DEA’s Trustee-directed Annuity Fund’s performance was a positive 9.03% net of fees for the calendar year 2016. The DEA Annuity Fund once again outperformed the $35-billion Police Pension Fund, which returned 8.86% net of fees over the same calendar year.

On Tuesday, April 11, 2017, Governor Cuomo signed the legislation giving Tier 3 members a three-quarters disability benefit equal to Tier 2 Officers. The bill parallels the recently enacted Tier 3 fix for Firefighters, including doing away with the Social Security offset.

 

All Tier 3 members will get written communication from the Police Pension Fund regarding the changes and the election form to “opt-in” to the enhanced benefit. The PPF created a new fact sheet handout that is on the PPF’s website at –

www.nyc.gov/html/nycppf/html/home/home.shtml

 

The PPF is releasing educational information for effected members. This includes a video explaining the new enhancements that has been uploaded to the Police Pension Fund website, and may possibly be distributed via the Department Intranet and through Smartphone devices. The “opt-in” Election Forms will be sent to effected members at the addresses they have on file with the PD. The forms will also be made available for downloading from the PPF website. The Department also plans to use their Facebook page, email, and other forms of communication to distribute the information.

 

You can also connect to the PPF’s website from the DEA’s homepage.

 

Any member of the service can nominate a Detective or group of Detectives for the DEA’s Detective of the Month Awards, which honors our members’ work on outstanding cases or incidents, or highlights members’ unusual examples of selfless actions. Submit a brief write-up, along with any supplemental paperwork (such as press clippings, 49s, etc.) to the DEA Treasurer at the DEA, 26 Thomas Street, New York, NY  10007.  Voting is handled by the DEA Board of Trustees.  Presentations are made at the DEA Delegates’ meetings and selected stories are highlighted in the DEA magazine, The Gold Shield.

On March 6, 2017, Tyrone Howard was found guilty of Murder in the first degree, robbery, and other charges related to the shooting death of Det. Randolph Holder. On Monday, April 3, Howard was sentence to life in prison without the possibility of parole.  Howard is a career criminal whose rap sheet includes 27 arrests.  The DEA thanks Judge Michael Obus and everyone who came out to support the Holder family during the trial and sentencing.

 

The DEA received this important information from the Austin, Texas Police Department via the National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO) regarding a significant risk to Officer safety and health when operating Ford Explorer vehicles because of Carbon Monoxide fumes entering the vehicle.

 

During the weekend of March 18-19, 2017, one of Austin P.D.’s Sergeants was overcome by exhaust fumes entering the passenger compartment of the patrol vehicle, causing significant injury to the Sergeant. Ford and NHTSA are apparently aware of the problem.

 

The DEA wants to make our members aware of this situation, too. Please read the following report:

 

Risk Management Safety Bulletin

Possible Risk of Carbon Monoxide Gas

By the Austin Police Department

 

There have been a few recent media reports about incidents where drivers have potentially been affected by Carbon Monoxide (CO) fumes while operating late model Ford Explorers. This includes Police Officers driving the newer Patrol version.  There have been two reported incidents within the Austin Police Department: one was for lightheadedness while driving a patrol SUV; the other was for a suspicious odor that a Sergeant was concerned about while he was operating a patrol SUV.

 

 

The Ford Motor company, along with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is investigating the issue. Their testing and research has not resulted in any direct conclusions about CO poisoning from these particular models, or the need to conduct a recall on any of the Ford Explorer SUV recent year models. The COA Fleet Services is aware of the issue and is actively monitoring this situation.  APD Risk Management is working with COA Fleet Services and other partners to stay current with the latest information.

 

At this time, APD Risk Management is not aware of any information to indicate that APD should discontinue use of late model Ford Explorers. Instead, Officers should be aware of the inherent, but remote risks posed by CO that are always present when operating a motor vehicle, and should take some basic steps to reduce those risks.

 

Carbon Monoxide is an odorless and colorless gas that is emitted by ALL motor vehicles that burn fossil fuels.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), symptoms of CO poisoning are as follows:

 

Headache, dizziness, weakness, upset stomach, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion. CO symptoms are often described as “flu-like.” If you breathe in enough CO gas it can cause unconsciousness which can lead to death.

 

 

There are some reports stating that the risk of CO gas exposure is increased while the vehicle’s ventilation system (A/C, Heat, and fan) is set on “recirculate.” The recirculate button is located on the dash console.  This button determines whether or not your car is cooling or heating fresh air from outside the car, or using the air within the car (re-circulated air). Using the vehicle’s air conditioning system with the control set to recirculation “on” will generally cool the vehicle faster and help the vehicle stay cooler, because you’re constantly using the cool air from within the car for air conditioning. In non-recirculation mode, when you’re using fresh air from outside the vehicle (which is much warmer in the summer), the air conditioning must work continuously to cool the hot air while pulling it into the vehicle. This creates additional work for the A/C system. Another benefit to using recirculate is when you need to avoid unpleasant odors and fumes from outside the vehicle, such as during heavy traffic congestion.

 

Using recirculate is generally the better option for fuel efficiency and climate control when operating the A/C, however, there is a POSSIBLE increase in the risk of contaminating the cabin air with CO from the vehicle exhaust system when recirculating air. Officers should be cognizant of the potential danger and introduce fresh air from the outside as regularly as possible. There has been no evidence in NHTSA’s recent investigation that would indicate the need to stop using the recirculate button entirely.

 

Officers can take several steps to recognize and protect themselves from possible danger. These steps should always be taken, regardless of any current media reports, because CO inhalation is ALWAYS a danger when operating a motor vehicle:

 

1. When you are using a vehicle that will be idling for long periods of time (traffic control, street closures, etc.), be sure to allow fresh air to enter the cabin on a regular basis.

 

2. Maintain awareness of your condition and mental state. If you begin feeling any of the above listed symptoms, introduce fresh air into your unit’s cabin.

 

3. Exit the vehicle on a regular basis to obtain fresh air. This will also help in your blood circulation.

 

4. If you are becoming lethargic or excessively tired, open the vehicle windows or exit the vehicle and get fresh air.

 

5. Pay attention to where you park. Most CO inhalation deaths that occur in motor vehicles occur when the driver is in an enclosed space (garage), when snow or mud obstructs the exhaust pipe, or when the terrain restricts the free flow of exhaust fumes away from the vehicle.

 

 

APD Risk Management will continue to track the Ford and NHTSA studies and will update Department personnel with important safety information.

 

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The Community Mayors of NY/NJ, which the DEA has been involved with for many years, is looking for volunteers for their spring 2017 season. The Community Mayors assists children with special needs, and their motto is, “No one is so tall as when they stoop to help a handicapped child.”

 

While updates can be found at their website at --http://www.communitymayors.org/about.htm

The spring season of hosting children with disabilities and special needs is slated as follows:

 

April 5 — St. John’s Athletes and Kids

April 28 — Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

May 5 — Earth Day w/ Poly Prep / Conference House Park, Staten Island, NY

May 10 — Deno’s Wonder Wheel

May 17 — Luna Park

May 24 — Adventurers

June 1 — Prospect Park Zoo

 

Check under “Kids Events” listed on the website.

 

Volunteers should arrive at all venues by 8:30 - 9:00 a.m.

 

Call (908) 268-9016 for more information or to volunteer.

 

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