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Ulster County will not release results of Facebook investigation

Jan 17, 2018 7:30 am

Patricia Doxsey is reporting for the Daily Freeman Ulster County officials are not disclosing the results of an internal investigation into a seemingly racist Facebook post by a county corrections officer. Those officials said to reveal the outcome of the inquiry would violate the officer's civil rights. County Attorney Bea Havranek cited Section 50-a of New York state law to support her decision to keep confidential the results of the investigation into the actions of Corrections Officer Charles “CJ” Polacco. According to that portion of the law, “all personnel records used to evaluate performance toward continued employment or promotion, under the control of any police agency or department ... shall be considered confidential and not subject to inspection or review.” Havranek said the investigation is in essence an administrative proceeding and therefore considered confidential. The findings of the investigation can only be released with the written consent of Polacco or by court order. Polacco remains employed as a corrections officer by the Sheriff's Office. In November, the 27-year veteran the Sheriff's Office published on his Facebook page a post Ulster County Executive Michael Hein said “did a massive disservice to the countless dedicated and honorable individuals who serve our county residents respectfully and with distinction each and every day.” The investigation into whether Polacco violated department policy when he published the post took more than two months. Ulster County Legislature Chairman Ken Ronk has said the Legislature could, in its upcoming session, consider adopting a social media policy for elected officials. Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.

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