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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Not Their Finest Hour

Not their Finest hour: NYPD officers probed by Internal Affairs Bureau for not halting cop before booze-fueled smashup
The New York Daily News by Rocco Parascandola - March 7, 2012
Christopher Morris was charged with DWI in crash after being accused of drinking heavily at fund-raiser for slain Officer Peter Figoski

Officer Christopher Morris, who had responded to the scene of Officer Peter Figoski's slaying in December, was arrested after crashing his cruiser at Schenck and Sutter Aves. in East New York, Brooklyn. MORE COPS could be in trouble for turning a blind eye to an officer accused of boozing at a fund-raiser, getting in his patrol car and crashing into a light pole. Internal Affairs investigators are using video from the bash honoring slain Officer Peter Figoski to question cops who were there, sources told the Daily News. They want to know if they mingled with Officer Christopher Morris, who was allegedly drinking, and why they didn’t stop him from getting behind the wheel. “They’re looking at the video from the diner, asking people, ‘Is that you? Is that Morris near you? Then why didn’t you do anything?’” one source said. “They’re telling them they have an obligation to notify IAB if they see corruption or misconduct.” Morris, 31, was among scores of cops who gathered last week at the Lindenwood Diner to raise money for Figoski’s four daughters. After Morris left, he smashed his cruiser into a light pole in East New York, sending the pole crashing down onto an unoccupied civilian car. Morris — who responded to the Dec. 12 shooting of Figoski during a botched robbery — was charged with drunken driving. He refused to take a blood alcohol test. The sergeant and lieutenant on duty the night of the fund-raiser were placed on modified duty, a common move against superior officers who fail to supervise. Since then, at least one other sergeant and lieutenant have been placed on modified duty and could be slapped with departmental charges, sources said. Other supervisors face a similar fate, while officers and detectives likely will lose vacation days, sources said. One source said it is unfair to punish officers for not turning in Morris, “a guy who was at the scene of Figoski’s murder and was clearly upset by what happened. “Nobody was going to rip the guy after what he went through.”

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