Troopers call Inspector General’s report a “power grab”; defend superintendent

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ALBANY – A report released Friday by the NYS Inspector General (IG) that is critical of the actions of State Police Superintendent Kevin Bruen is being rebuked by the New York State Troopers PBA.

The report by Inspector General (IG) Lucy Lang is critical of Bruen’s handling of an incident that involved a trooper assigned to Governor Cuomo’s security detail who admitted to being romantically involved with one of Cuomo’s three daughters.  The Mid-Hudson News story regarding the affair and investigation can be found here.

The IG’s report demanded that the involved trooper be disciplined for his off-duty conduct.  The PBA says the call for discipline is off-target because his actions were”personal in nature and had nothing to do with his duties or responsibilities.”

As indicated in Lang’s report, Trooper Duane Pfeiffer followed protocol by advising his supervisor of the affair two months before the daughter told then-Governor Cuomo.  “It is unfortunate that instead of sticking to the facts, the Inspector General’s office used the method of “throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks” to search for sections of the New York State Police’s Rules and Regulations as well as the Public Officers’ Law – that we believe would be unconstitutional if applied based on this fact pattern – to buttress their predetermined results of their investigation,” the PBA said in a statement on Friday afternoon.

“I am speechless at the Inspector General’s report,” said NYSTPBA President Thomas Mungeer. “Our Trooper is being used as a political pawn for a power grab by the Inspector General to assert her undue influence on the New York State Police. I stand by the decisions made by Superintendent Kevin Bruen and have full faith in his leadership of the State Police.”

Mungeer said, “The Inspector General’s overreaching assertions to have complete oversight of the New York State Police is inconsistent with other sections of the Executive Law and the historic interpretation of who should be in charge of, and conducting operations and investigations of, the New York State Police.”