Administrative disciplinary action involving charges based on employee’s being convicted of crime
NYC Department of Sanitation v Anonymous, OATH Index No. 1159//12
A New York City sanitation police officer was served with disciplinary charges after he was convicted of possession of cocaine in federal court.
New York City’s Executive Order 16 of 1978 provides for the dismissal of any City employee who is convicted of a crime relating to their employment, “involving moral turpitude or which bears upon their fitness to perform their duties … absent compelling mitigating circumstances.”
In defending himself in the administrative disciplinary proceeding the employee argued that his experience as a first responder on September 11 had left him with PTSD, causing depression and substance abuse.
OATH Administrative Law Judge Ingrid M. Addison found that the individual’s conviction related to his employment as a law enforcement officer and bore upon his fitness to perform the duties of that job. As to “mitigating circumstances” that might be a factor with respect to his misconduct, Judge Addison found his claims “insufficiently compelling” and recommended that respondent be terminated from his employment.
N.B. Public Officers Law §30.1.e provides, in pertinent part, that a public office shall become vacant “by operation of law” upon the incumbent’s “conviction of a felony, or a crime involving a violation of his oath of office…. “ A police officer is a “public officer” within the meaning of POL §30.1.e.
The decision is posted on the Internet at:http://archive.citylaw.org/oath/12_Cases/12-1159.pdf