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Suffolk DA Seizes Police Documents From Town Hall

Investigators from the county's Government Corruption Bureau subpoena Southampton Town Wednesday morning for documents said to contain "every confidential personnel police investigation from the police department from the years 1990-2009."

Following allegations that police documents were shredded in the days before Southampton Town Police Chief William Wilson assumed his post one year ago, detectives with Suffolk County District Attorney's Office Government Corruption Bureau subpoenaed the Southampton Town clerk's office Wednesday.

The detectives seized boxes of documents from in Southampton Village that had been transferred one year ago from in Hampton Bays. The move comes "as part of an active investigation of the custodianship and status of police department records stored there," said Robert Clifford, the spokesman for District Attorney Thomas Spota.

A copy of the subpoena obtained by Patch Wednesday afternoon was addressed to the Southampton Town's "custodian of records" in the matter of "a criminal action presented by the People of the State of New York against JOHN DOE."

The subpoena demands "Any and all records documents, files, folders, boxes, audio recordings, video records or other images transported on or about May 13, 2011" as well as logs of who accessed or possessed the records since that date.

A Town Police Department memo that accompanies the subpoena says the boxes of documents "represent every confidential personnel police investigation from the police department from the years 1990-2009."

The memo was dated May 13, 2011, and states that Town Management Services Administrator Russell Kratoville received the documents, and they were transported by Town Clerk/Records Management Officer Sundy Schermeyer and escorted by Sgt. Michael Joyce. The memo is also signed by former Capt. Anthony Tenaglia, who had vied against Wilson for the chief's post before retiring. Wilson assumed the role May 16.

The seizure comes five days after , the former head of the Police Department's defunct street crime unit.

“The documents have been the focus of some conversation over the last year,” Wilson said Wednesday morning, explaining there there were concerns of records being removed or tampered with.

Wilson said he could not speak to what information the documents contain.

“That’s the problem — I don’t know," he said. "They were removed before I started working there.”

Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst had ordered the documents moved to Town Hall to protect their integrity, Wilson said. “We have been having discussions on how to best transfer the documents back to the police department. The town attorney’s office prepared a protocol to facilitate that transfer.”

Throne-Holst said she received a call at approximately 9 a.m. on Wednesday morning from the district attorney’s office, letting her know that the town would be served with the subpoena.

Approximately seven boxes of records were removed, according to Throne-Holst. She said the records had been initially removed from the police department at the time of the transition to the new police chief in May.

At that time, Throne-Holst said, “We got reports of documents being shredded and possibly leaving the premises.”

She addressed the situation and the decision was made to move the files to Town Hall during the course of the transition to secure them, she said. “I thought that was the prudent thing to do."

While she has not seen the boxes, Throne-Holst said it was “fair to assume” the contents include personnel and internal investigative files. “Other than that, I can’t begin to speculate about whether whatever they contain is anything of substance as it relates to an ongoing investigation or not. That’s what the DA’s office is trying to ascertain.”

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cm May 11, 2012 at 02:22 PM
Of course Southampton is corrupt. I don't think Suffolk county has enough resources to dig through it all. I also believe if all county workers did.not have 2nd jobs that may help. Hint hint.
Jaguar-Guy May 11, 2012 at 04:28 PM
Hint-hint @ what?? Again, nobody has the guts to describe the "corruption" - so I cannot follow any more conjecture and speculation on this since it is a waste of time.
RyeDad May 11, 2012 at 05:18 PM
The town of Southampton has paid their labor attorney Vincent Toomey more than $1,400,000 since 2005. Maybe he has copies of any documents they may be missing from the Police Department. Maybe he should get a subpoena too. $1,400,000. For what???????
Jaguar-Guy May 12, 2012 at 01:15 PM
Thank you RyeDad for describing what you think happened. Anyone else ???
RyeDad May 12, 2012 at 02:03 PM
Jaguar-Guy I am merely stating how much the town of Southampton paid thier labor lawyer Vincent Toomey since 2005. $1,400,000. Village of Southampton $800,000+ since 2001. East Hampton $1,000,000+ since 2001. That's $3,200,000+ from just three towns in ten years. Are there good relationships between labor and management in these towns? Who benefits the most when there are not good labor management relationships?
Jaguar-Guy May 12, 2012 at 02:12 PM
Hi RyeDad, I was NOT being sarcastic. I was thanking you for actually stating something, unlike all other posts above that are obtuse. Thank you, and good job. Hey, where is Roger Blaugh when you need him ??!!! ;-)
RyeDad May 12, 2012 at 02:27 PM
No problem Jaguar-Guy. Being paid $1,400,000 by the Town of Southampton since 2005 you would think Toomey has copies of any important documents that may have been shredded. One could surmise that Toomey created or had a hand in a good number of them. Maybe the D.A. should issue a subpoena to Toomey and then compare what he has with what the Town of Southampton has.
Jaguar-Guy May 12, 2012 at 03:52 PM
All attorneys MUST keep their files for Seven (7) years before they can be destroyed. In addition to other things being looked into, perhaps they are also fishin' through these before they could be "legally" shredded ?? Rock on RyeDad !!!
Roger Blaugh May 12, 2012 at 05:33 PM
I am here, watching the comments unfold. I'm referring to talk around town about that Town Ordinance Officer who was busted 2 weeks ago for allegedly selling dope. He got hired by the Town Board even when everyone knew that the guy allegedly got busted for the same crime a couple years ago. Then there's the Lieutenant of the Street Crimes Unit got yanked on news about that group's ineffectiveness when it came to cooperating (or not) in DEA drug busts. The casual reader might think that the crooks got tipped off by the cops. Then we top off the mess with Kratoville (the $100,000+/year Republican appointee) calling Chief Wilson, not once but possibly twice, asking: "What will it take ($$$) for you to get lost?". Wouldn't Republicans want an honest cop in charge of our PD? I would. And there's nobody more honest than Billy Wilson. I have a feeling, that's what they're worried about and THAT is what should worry us as well. That leads us to the 7 boxes of police personnel files that grew legs and ended up in Republican Town Clerk Sundy Schermeyer's vault. So, we've got alleged drug dealers working with cops that don't cooperate with the DEA, a busted police lieutenant, a Republican appointee trying to buy out the Police Chief without Town Board approval, files that grew legs in the middle of the night, people refusing to turn them over and, finally the County DA who, I hope, is going to kick some butt. Nice movie material...but this is no joke.
Wingman May 12, 2012 at 07:38 PM
Rye Dad should look into all the money Westhampton Beach Village has paid to Labor Counsels for their on going Police controversies over the past ten years. The Village Board has literally spent a fortune for legal advise for a tiny 16 member Police Department that still isn't accredited!
Jaguar-Guy May 12, 2012 at 10:57 PM
You're right Roger, a new Hamptons Mystery Novel !!! When will you begin to pen same ??!! Thanks for ALL of that information - and Happy Mother's Day to all.
RyeDad May 13, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Wingman: Thank you. Any other Toomey legal fees leads?
Nancy Evans Figat May 13, 2012 at 06:35 PM
Ok! Listen to me everyone concerned with what is going on. It is not limited to Southampton.
Nancy Evans Figat May 13, 2012 at 06:49 PM
What I could do is give a descrete class with my timeline, the players & documenary proofs. Supporting what I allege. How I know is that I was married to a formmer employee @ former Westhampton Chevy Dealership Pastor Chevrolet. Beginning in early 1988 is my knowledge concerning corruption. It continues to today. Most proofs are not in those boxes carried out of Shampton Village recently. They are readily available to view & copy at the County Center in Riverhead, Note that this is vvery similar to the 2009 M.0. Of Tom Spota. When George Guldi was arrested for fraud..It appears to be all a big show to the public by all. To make it apper that official & L.E, are doing their jobs. Are adressing crimes & keeping corruption at bay. I know different. Due to my 12 years of experience trying to divorce my still estranged husband here in Suffolk. Not for the skeptic or those with weak stomachs. Only the open minded who believe what they can see and I can prove. Can be done in incriments or chapters. There is much to digest and ponder on. Took me 5 years of diligent documenting & cross referencing documents. Now I get it. Can't fool me any more.
Nancy Evans Figat May 13, 2012 at 06:52 PM
Spota is one of the crooks. hich is why he filled the job of SCPD Comissioner with a cohort of his. When SCPD requires a Wilson. Who is welcome to contact me.
Nancy Evans Figat May 14, 2012 at 06:18 AM
The misconduct and abuse of power are shocking. Would anyone be surpurized if thy found out that these officials have an under ground financial system going on for years in Suffolk. Mortgage fraud..unbelieveable where the proceeds from Sub prime loans are goung and how.
Peconic Sunset May 14, 2012 at 02:08 PM
That is about $200,000 per year, could be legitimate given hourly billing rates.
Nancy Evans Figat May 14, 2012 at 03:14 PM
Due to my family being harassed and victimzed by all Suffolk County Police. My own study of the paperwork that I have in my posession. I know this does not make sense. We meaning my family . Are being followed/stalked by our gps in our cell phones. Ex. has access to everything ..as if..he was an employee of Suffolk. Many years ago he created new birth certificates on our 4 children now adults. Used a fraudulent marriage license he also created in 1988. (Were orig, married 1977 out of state of NY.) Then used fake m license. Got me a 2nd Soc.Sec.#. attached our kids to that #. Now IRS knows. He has SHVP, Rvhd police, SCPD. use gps to locate us. What is being done? I will cont. later way too bad to be believed but true.
RyeDad May 15, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Peconic Sunset: Town of Southampton $1,700,000 since 2005. Village of Southampton $800,000 since 2001. East Hampton $1,000,000 since 2001. 7 towns in Westchester $5,900,000 since 2001. That's a total of at least $9,400,000 in legal fees since 2001.
RyeDad May 15, 2012 at 09:59 PM
I neglected to write that the $9,400,000 in legal fees since 2001 all went to Vincent Toomey and his law firm.
Meadow Lane May 16, 2012 at 05:06 PM
NEWSDAY: DA Seats Grand Jury in Town Police Probe. The plot thickens and the net is thrown wider in Town Hall. Rots of ruck, if you've had your sticky fingers in the Police personnel files.
The Beav May 16, 2012 at 05:13 PM
"Bingo!" The DA has a winner and it's NOT the taxpayers! Corrupt Town officials will be taken to task for their involvement in the widening scheme to intimidate citizens of Southampton Town. Does this include an investigation of Councilman Malone? it was commented about 2 months ago right here in Patch, that Malone allegedly used Town Police to intimidate a young contractor into dropping his lawsuit. This is the SAME kind of activity reported in today's NEWSDAY. I hope the DA is reading this or someone will need to drop a dime on this guy and his alleged activities. Malone is also double-dipping as the Suffolk County Deputy Clerk.
Hay Farmer May 16, 2012 at 05:17 PM
Time to DUMP MALONE and anyone who runs with him. Dirty politics and political affiliations are a thing of the County, not our Town. The Republicans are turning our good Town into Brookhaven or what they now ashamedly call "CROOKHAVEN". What will they call Southampton? Seems like everywhere you look these days, Republicans have their hands in somebody's pockets, starting with the taxpayers.
East Hampton Retiree May 16, 2012 at 05:19 PM
I'm ashamed to call myself a Republican!
Postman Sharp May 16, 2012 at 05:28 PM
Good job, Chief Wilson! Finally, an honest man for our community. Go get 'em Billy!!
Nancy Evans Figat May 16, 2012 at 05:57 PM
Recently I supplied Wilson with some ammunition.In the form of documentary evidence of mortgage and insurance fraud. Being used to bribe county of Suffolk & town of Riverhed & Souhampton officials. To colude in the violation of rights and legal abuse beyond what can be imagined. More to follow. Spota will play along now. Pretending not to be part of it.
RyeDad May 16, 2012 at 07:52 PM
Being paid $1,400,000 by the Town of Southampton since 2005 you would think the Town's labor lawyer, Vincent Toomey, would have copies of any important personnel documents that may have been shredded. One could surmise that Toomey created or had a hand in a good number of them if not all of them. I believe he has to maintain these records for at least 7 years. Maybe the D.A. should issue a subpoena to Toomey and then compare what he has with what the Town of Southampton has. Toomey and his law firm have raked in at least $9,400,000 in legal fees and expenses from the Town of Southampton, the Village of Southampton, East Hampton and seven Westchester municipalities since 2001. If the DA subpoenas Toomey for any records he may have that may have been shredded by someone from the town, maybe they should look into these legal fees while their there. At least $9,400,000 since 2001? Holy Cow!!!!!!
Peconic Sunset May 16, 2012 at 09:10 PM
That is a large amount of money but I don't know the scope of work so I can't assess whether it is a fair amount for the work performed. If this is in the public venue, it would be a great subject for investigative reporting.
RyeDad May 17, 2012 at 01:48 AM
Peconic Sunset: There is actually a lot more than $9,400,000 that hasn't been reported yet. Update to come.
RyeDad May 24, 2012 at 05:26 PM
$10,300,000.

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