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police & fire

Police To Rally In Support Of Suspended Clarkstown Chief

A rally will he held Tuesday in New City for suspended Clarkstown police Chief Michael Sulllivan.
A rally will he held Tuesday in New City for suspended Clarkstown police Chief Michael Sulllivan. Photo Credit: Facebook

CLARKSTOWN, N.Y. -- A rally will take place in Clarkstown this week to support suspended police Chief Michael Sullivan, according to the local Police Benevolent Association.

The rally is set for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 26, at the New City Fire House, 15 Maple Ave., New City.

Town Board officials have not commented on the reasons behind their unanimous vote last week to suspend Sullivan.

However, according to a report by lohud.com, Sullivan and town Supervisor George Hoehmann had not been getting along for a while, and things only got worse after the police chief questioned the experience of a firm the town had hired to study the police department’s financing.

Mike Sullivan, in a Facebook post, said his father was getting support from local residents and business owners, other police officers, firefighters, union members and "people from all over the county, people from outside the county, people from other states and all places in between."

"It's really been kind of crazy to see how many he's left such a positive mark on and how many are ready to jump in and support." the chief's son said.

"All these testaments about the absolute professionalism and kindness my dad has shown over the last three decades of service make me incredibly proud and honored to call him my father," he added.

Capt. Robert Mahon is currently leading the 168-officer department, which also employs 24 civilians.

Sullivan joined Clarkstown police in 1987, and rose through the ranks to become chief five years ago. Prior to that, he worked for the New York City Police Department.

PBA president Raymond Laschet, in a statement posted on Facebook, expressed shock over Sullivan’s suspension.

While the organization does not know the “specific allegations or charges” brought against Sullivan, it does know that he “has been a police officer for over 32 years, 30 of those serving and protecting the residents of the Town of Clarkstown,” Laschet wrote.

Laschet praised Sullivan as “a fair and dedicated leader of the largest police department in Rockland County.”

The PBA, as it would when any member faces disciplinary charges, has to “wait for due process to prevail and let the facts come forth before rushing to judgement,” Laschet wrote in the post.

Other law enforcement officers reached by the Daily Voice said they found the suspension troubling.

Spring Valley Police Chief Paul Modica said he hoped the suspension was “not politically motivated."

Modica, who is president of the county’s Police Chiefs Association, praised Sullivan as “a man of integrity who stands fast for what is right and won’t be bullied.”

According to lohud.com, Sullivan said Friday that he had done nothing wrong, or committed any conduct that would be considered unbecoming to an officer of the law.

The town has to hire a hearing officer to gather evidence and make a recommendation, which could include dismissal, lohud.com reported.

To read a related Daily Voice story, click here.

To read the lohud.com stories, click here and here .

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