Letters: Outcome in Nassau cop corruption
As one of the attorneys for William Flanagan who sat in the courtroom every day and heard all the testimony and evidence in the prosecution's case, I feel it necessary to point out that columnist Joye Brown's column, "Rethinking definition of corruption" [News, Feb. 19], was wrong on several counts.
First, Flanagan was acquitted of the lone felony, leaving only misdemeanors that may be vulnerable on appeal. The article and the jury were too eager to comment on what has widely been seen as the overriding issues involving the police and not the specific allegations leveled against Flanagan.
The column ends by quoting a juror who said that something was "clearly . . . amiss." That erroneous evaluation of Flanagan's case highlights just one reason the conviction will be reversed. The trial was not supposed to be about the broad question of whether something was amiss. The trial should have been about whether or not Flanagan committed the specific crimes with which he was charged.
There was no evidence whatsoever that Flanagan ordered or even suggested that Zachary Parker not be arrested. Also, the suggestion that the lack of a "serious investigation" and failure to properly log evidence should fall on Flanagan is completely unfounded.
Bruce A. Barket, Garden City
While Joye Brown's piece was a welcome analysis of the outrageous conduct of a former second deputy commisioner in the Nassau County Police Department, it neglects to mention the most egregious crime that went uncharged: A take home pay of $224,929 for a police officer? Really?
Nassau County has no one to blame for its fiscal plight but our elected and appointed officials who rubber-stamp these union contracts.
Christian Whitey, Rockville Centre