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Paterson: I wasn't aware of state troopers' actions

State Police Chief Harry Corbitt, left, listens as

State Police Chief Harry Corbitt, left, listens as Gov. David Paterson, speaks at a news conference on March 24, 2008. Corbitt abruptly retired, effective Wednesday, amid a domestic violence scandal threatening Paterson. Photo Credit: AP File

ALBANY - Gov. David A. Paterson said Sunday he didn't know until recently the State Police had contacted the woman claiming to have been assaulted by a Paterson aide.

The aide, David Johnson, reportedly asked troopers guarding Paterson to reach out to the Bronx woman after the alleged incident on Oct. 31. Police Superintendent Harry J. Corbitt, who retired on March 3, has confirmed the woman was spoken to but denied she was pressured to drop her court case.

The troopers and Paterson have been accused of interfering in the woman's request for a court order of protection. After speaking with Paterson last month, she didn't show up at Bronx Family Court and the case was dismissed.

Asked Sunday by WCBS-TV if he had been aware of the troopers' action, Paterson said, "No." He has denied wrongdoing and promised to cooperate with investigators looking into the matter.

Johnson has denied the woman's assault claim. He also has denied misusing his position.

Paterson Sunday also expanded his denial of accusations he lied under oath about soliciting and using free tickets to a 2009 World Series game. "I told the truth at all times," he said on WCBS' "Eye on New York" program.

The state Public Integrity Commission found Paterson never planned to pay for five game tickets with a total face value of $2,125.

After questions from a newspaper reporter, Paterson allegedly decided to pay for tickets used by his teenage son Alex and the son's friend. A backdated check for $850 was sent to the Yankees, according to the commission.

Paterson said Sunday he didn't act any differently than Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani in attending high-profile sporting events. There "may just be a misunderstanding that we're trying to clear up with the Public Integrity Commission."


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