NY District Attorney Faces Inquiry After Police Clash

NY District Attorney Faces Inquiry After Police Clash

The upstate New York district attorney, Sandra Doorley, found herself in hot water after a contentious encounter with a local cop. Caught on bodycam footage, the incident unfolded when Doorley chose to ignore a speeding stop, driving all the way to her home in Webster, New York, where she dismissed the officer as an ‘a-hole’ and even contacted the police chief to complain. The video, which emerged last Friday, led Governor Kathy Hochul to refer Doorley to the Commission for Prosecutorial Conduct for investigation.

Hochul condemned Doorley’s actions as unprofessional, accusing her of attempting to evade responsibility and asserting superiority over the law. The governor stressed the importance of public officials, especially district attorneys, upholding ethical standards while performing their duties. Doorley was ultimately issued a speeding ticket for her infraction and later pleaded guilty before the incriminating footage surfaced.

The Commission for Prosecutorial Conduct, established in 2021 to oversee the behavior of district attorneys, consists of 10 members and acts as an independent body to ensure ethical standards are maintained. In response to Doorley’s behavior capture on the bodycam, Governor Hochul swiftly made the referral for investigation, emphasizing the significance of law enforcement officers and their commitment to safeguarding all New Yorkers.

The commission, with the authority to review and probe prosecutors’ conduct for violations of state laws or court rules, holds a critical role in maintaining accountability within the justice system. Ironically, Doorley had opposed the legislation that formed the commission during her tenure as the president of the District Attorneys Association of the State of New York in 2021, adding a layer of complexity to the situation.

The footage revealed Doorley confessing to driving 20 miles over the speed limit and leveraging her position as the district attorney multiple times during the encounter. She expressed a lack of concern for her speeding, citing a busy day dealing with criminal cases as justification for her actions. Furthermore, Doorley can be heard requesting leniency and intervention from the police chief during the confrontation, while disregarding the officer’s directives with disdain.

Following the public outcry over the video, the Rochester City Council took action by urging Attorney General Letitia James to launch an investigation into the incident. Displaying a defensive stance, Doorley cleaned her social media presence, attempting damage control amidst the escalating criticism. In a statement released after the backlash, Doorley acknowledged that nobody, including a district attorney, is exempt from abiding by traffic laws and the rule of law, a response that seeks to address the mounting scrutiny on her conduct.

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