police

Ellen Abbott / WRVO

Once Republican John Katko begins representing central New York's 24th Congressional District next month, he says he plans to take time to praise police in an era when police-community relations have become strained.

When Katko was a federal prosecutor in Syracuse, he worked a great deal with police officers and came across some of the bad apples.

J J / via Flickr

There has been a groundswell in recent months to equip police officers nationwide with body cameras. These cameras are becoming more commonplace in law enforcement agencies, but some officials still have concerns.

Following the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown during confrontations with police, President Barack Obama announced his proposal to spend more than $260 million of federal funding to help purchase 50,000 body cameras and provide additional training for police.

There are growing calls in Albany for a special prosecutor to investigate police encounters with unarmed citizens that end in the death of the person.  Senate Democrats are the latest to ask for immediate action in the wake of the death of Eric Garner and other recent incidents.

The state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has already asked Gov. Andrew Cuomo for an executive order to empower the attorney general to investigate and, if warranted, prosecute cases where unarmed civilians are killed by police officers.

hermanturnip / Flickr

The Syracuse Police Department will implement new rules regarding the use of Tasers next year. The changes come as the result of a settlement of a lawsuit filed by the New York Civil Liberties Union charging Taser abuse in city schools.

The lawsuit involved the use of Tasers against two students, including one who was trying to break up a fight between other students, and another involving a diabetic student who was upset over academic issues and lying on the floor. In both cases no charges were filed, even as both students were handcuffed and taken from school.

Ellen Abbott/WRVO

The Eric Garner protests have spread to central New York. About two dozen demonstrators gathered in front of the federal building in Syracuse today to express concern about latest court case involving an unarmed black man killed by police.  

Anna Morris of Syracuse says she was angry and hurt when she heard there would be no charges filed against the police officer involved in the chokehold death of Eric Garner in New York City.

Jenna Flanagan/Innovation Trail

Just hours after a Staten Island grand jury ruled there were no grounds to indict a white police officer in the killing of an African American man, Albany’s elected officials, community leaders and members came together to discuss ways to improve policing in the capital cities minority communities. 

J J / via Flickr

The Utica Police Department is closing in on its 100th arrest made with evidence gathered on social media.

Four years ago, Utica police decided to post a video of a crime on Facebook. They hoped someone on the social media site would recognize the suspect or provide other clues.

It worked, says Lieutenant Steve Hauck, and they’ve been using Facebook more and more since.

Today is Law Enforcement Day at the New York State Fair. Police officials remembered officers lost in the line of duty with a special memorial. State Police Superintendent Joe D’Amico says it’s been a tough 15 months in his department, with five officers killed while on duty. He says it’s hard on morale.

“They’re friends, they're people you work with," D'Amico said. "You talk about the law enforcement family, and it really is. It’s more than just colleagues. People become very close, so it’s very difficult.”

At least one member of Utica's Common Council is calling for the city's public safety commissioner to perform a top-down review of the city's safety policies, saying a rise in gun crime and the heroic actions of two residents are a call for change.

Councilman Joe Marino presented his request during a meeting last week and is calling on Mayor Robert Palmieri, who also serves as the city's public safety commissioner, to provide the council with a full review.

Ken Hawkins / Flickr

The chief of the East Syracuse police department is now faced with the task of phasing out his force by the end of the year. Residents of the village last night voted to dissolve the department and merge it with the DeWitt police force.

The village rejected the measure the first time it came up in October 2012, but taxes have gone up 22 percent since then. The town board resurrected the idea this year and voters passed the measure Tuesday.

The village of East Syracuse is deciding this evening whether it can afford to continue staffing a fulltime police force.

In October 2012, residents of the village voted down the idea of dissolving its police force and merging it with that of neighboring DeWitt. But since that vote, taxes for residents have shot up 22 percent and the town board again approved the measure this spring.

For Janini Puliatti, having more eyes watching over the village is worth the expense.

Residents in Pulaski will vote in March to keep or abolish the Pulaski Police Department, but some are worried resources will be stretched too thin.

Police face higher health risks: UBuffalo study

Oct 15, 2012
Lake Effects Photography / flickr

Due to the stressful nature of police work, law enforcement officers face higher risks of obesity, suicide, sleeplessness and cancer, according to a new study from a University at Buffalo professor who has a unique insight into the issue.

jsawkins / Flickr

In a criminal trial, nothing makes guilt seem so certain than a confession from the accused. But a surprising number of confessions are not reliable. The incriminating facts often mentioned by police, then repeated later by the suspect. 

Recently, the New York State Bar Association joined the call for police to videotape interrogations. It's part of an effort to reduce wrongful convictions. 

Remembering fallen members of the police force

May 15, 2012
Matt Johnston

It was a day of remembrance today in Syracuse at the newly renovated Forman Park. Mayor Stephanie Miner, Syracuse Police Chief Frank Fowler, and Onondaga County Sheriff Kevin Walsh were all on hand to honor members of the police force that have fallen in the line of duty.

The organization that investigates police brutality by the Syracuse Police Department could be coming back to life.  Syracuse Lawmakers December 19th will decide whether to approve a revised law that solves some of the issues that have plagued the Citizen's Review Board over it's 17 year history.