3 Former Nassau County Police Officials Charged With Official Misconduct, Conspiracy

MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Three former high-ranking Nassau County police officials have been indicted in connection with a burglary investigation from three years ago.

Second Deputy Commissioner William Flanagan, 54, Deputy Chief Inspector John Hunter, 59, and Alan Sharpe, 54, a recently retired deputy commander, surrendered to District Attorney Kathleen Rice’s office Thursday morning. They later defended their integrity.

When asked if turning himself in on charges of official misconduct and conspiracy was an admission of wrongdoing in any way, Flanagan said, “Absolutely not. The people of Nassau County understand where I  come from and what I am. I will let my record stand on that.”

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall On The Indictment

EXTRA: Read The Grand Jury Indictment

The commanders added they resigned only to spare the department difficulty, denying they conspired to intentionally prevent the arrest of a student,  Zachary Parker, whose father was a big booster for police causes.

“This came as a complete shock to him, to us, because lawyers were involved for all parties. The school had lawyer, the family had a lawyer and it was worked out. Zachary graduated high school and went on to college,” attorney Robert Schalk told CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan.

1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports

Parker, 20, was suspected of stealing audio-visual equipment back in 2009 from Kennedy High School in Bellmore — where he was a student. He wasn’t arrested and the police officials are accused of showing special treatment by deliberately inhibiting the arrest of the wealthy benefactor’s son.

According to a published report, Parker’s father, Gary, had contacted school and police officials and requested the case be handled as a civil rather than a criminal matter.

nassau cops 3 Former Nassau County Police Officials Charged With Official Misconduct, Conspiracy

Officers William Flanagan, John Hunter, Alan Sharpe (credit: Handout)

However, following an investigation that was sparked by a report in the Long Island Press, Zachary Parker was eventually indicted by a grand jury and charged with burglary, grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property.

“This is a sad day for law enforcement in Nassau County,” Rice said. “These defendants violated their oath and the law when they prevented a suspect’s arrest and took investigative direction from the suspect’s father.  The people of Nassau County deserve equal and fair justice, and they deserve public officials who will perform their duties free from undue influence.”

Flanagan maintained he didn’t know the Parkers at the time of the burglary.

“After that, well after that, they became acquainted. They socialized together, go to dinner together, their wives have met, they’ve been to each others’ house,” attorney Bruce Barket said.

“The exercise of police discretion is being criminalized by an indictment,” Barket told CBS 2’s Sean Hennessey. “Not every crime ends up with a criminal charge of arrest, just like not every person who speeds when they get pulled over end up with a ticket.”

Sharpe’s attorney, Anthony Grandinette, denied any criminal activity on the part of his client and said the officer has been “a dedicated cop for 27 years.”

“He’s done nothing but provide exemplary service to members of this community,” Grandinette said.

The indictment says when Hunter agreed to help out, the teen’s father sent an e-mail saying: “Thank you for being a great person and friend.” To which Hunter replied: “That’s what friends are for.”

Hunter’s attorney, William Petrillo, said his client devoted his life to the citizens of Nassau County.

“He did not commit any crime. He will plead not guilty, and when this case is over he will be fully exonerated,” Petrillo said.

The indictment charges the police commanders received meals, gift cards and other awards for not arresting Parker. The officers were charged with official misconduct and conspiracy. All face at least a year behind bars if convicted.

Flanagan and Hunter submitted their resignations on Wednesday. Sharpe retired on Jan. 5. The three men pleaded not guilty and were released without bail. They are due back in court on May 22.

According to CBS 2’s McLogan, Gary Parker will not be charged. The police foundation has not been charged. Zachary Parker, however, will be arraigned Friday morning.

What do you think of the allegations? Should they face charges? Sound off in our comments section below.

  • Sarah

    A Young man in the Bronx is dead killed in his own bathroom for running away from police because he possessed marijuana. His sentence was death, many underprivileged urban youth are given criminal records for less than what this boy did and instead of upholding the law these cretins look the other way. the scripture says it all “Woe be on to them that call evil good and good evil” . there is God.

  • Donalds

    Routine polygraphs to fight police misconduct and corruption. http://t.co/rv9CwYeR

  • Kris Soph

    The district attorney should use this as an opportunity to get more info out of these clowns. Give them no jail time in exchange for testimony, like they do the mob. Lets find out exactly how the pba got their contracts, etc. At their age, they don’t want jail, this is a political opportunity and they will spill the beans if this is handled correctly.

    • Kris Soph

      These guys could write a book, theire is a reason why Flanagan has a big smile on his face.

  • LiberalsRDopes

    And these d-bags get to keep their bloated pensions….Thanks Liberals!!!

  • Bullett

    Any member of law enforcement who sells their badge, no longer deserves that title and should be punished for their crime just as much as the next violator. Loss of pension?, by all means a BIG YES!

  • Leslie Bratzel

    For all of you who toss the PBA’s junk mail in the trash, beware what your friendly neighborhood cops would do to your kids just to get off the night shift.

  • Thom Raut

    A departure from the standard practice wherein they kite the estimate of damage – in cahoots with the school administration – in order to up the charge and overcharge.

  • K

    Funny that I get handed a laptop to program for work thats stolen, i return it immediately upon finding out what it is, and still must spend 10k to clear my name, and get an apology. This kid knows someone, and 3 130k a year plus cops can’t even be morally sound enough to enforce the law. Screw them, offer them a deal. Forfeit half your pension, ban them from any law enforcement, public safety employment, and 5 years probation Thats fair.

  • Anne

    Why would anyone be afraid to break the law? There are no consequences, regardless of the outcome, in other words if found guilty, they will still receive their pensions. How is that right???

  • The Realist

    What happened to all cops being Legally Designated Heroes, and thus 100% exempt from all laws? What changed?

  • Alan

    Since Cops love to go thru red lights and stop signs, drive the opposite way on one way streets and get to ride public transportation for free etc etc—-then when they break the law like these crooks the regular penalties should be TRIPLED !!!!!

  • bobby

    The D,A,.’S Office with the pathetic pea brain Rice who is their D.A. ARE JOKES .Is this how you spend the tax payers money?This is an out rage .These guys are retired .The case involved iis a kid stealing a radio .Yes there was probably somebody trying to look out for the kid it goes on all the time .Its sounds like a WIITCH hunt from the WITCH RICE .How much money is this going to cost the tax payers of long island ??/This is an out rage and it sure looks like a hunt to me …This stolen Radio is going to cost the tax payers THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS ..WHAT A F— JOKE YES rICE THATS WHAT YOU ARE A JOKE ..Why dont you concentrate on keepiing real crimminals locked up instead of letting them out to commit more crimes ….

    • Gilda Provenzanno

      Moron. Witch hunt? This is the TIP of the iceberg. If people only knew! This is NOTHING. Cops get away with so much more than this. I have seen with my own two eyes.

    • truth

      You are corrupt

  • jim

    and it goes on and on. Why were they allowed to retire? Keep their pensions maybe?

  • lisa

    how do you people know that the charges are even founded?….how do you known the corruption isn’t higher up and these aren’t good men being slandered?

  • M.A.D

    Waste of tax payers funds

  • Dr. Smith

    It’s like the NYPD said, “IT’S NOT A CRIME, BUT A COURTESY”.

  • Mrplease

    Why were retirements permitted? Perhaps there should be more investigations!

  • Nassau

    Obviosuly trying to keep their pensions by retiring!

  • Eribus Planntsington

    Just like the bankers who feel they did no wrong, these guys are living in another world from our reality. It was and is a crime to do what they did, and they should be punished. But let’s see what the judge, who has known and worked with them for years, will doll out…..

  • adios amigos

    One hand washes the other…………..

  • Nonya

    If there’s no wrong doing why did they resign?



  • Michael LasCross

    Business as usual in Nassau county

    • truth

      aint that the truth

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