ALBANY, NY ( NYTimes.com / WKBW / release ) The New York Times is reporting Wednesday that the retired judge investigating Gov. David A. Paterson’s intervention in a domestic violence case, involving a former top aide, did not recommend any charges against the governor.
The report from retired judge Judith S. Kaye, the former chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, found that Mr. Paterson had made substantial errors of judgment in repeatedly contacting the victim in the case during and after the fight with his aide, but that his actions did not rise to the level of witness tampering or any related criminal offense.
Ms. Kaye was asked to take over the investigation in April by Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo, who recused himself from the case.
While Mr. Paterson does not appear to be in further legal jeopardy, the aide, David W. Johnson, may face further charges, the person said. Ms. Kaye will refer evidence regarding Mr. Johnson to the Bronx district attorney’s office, which is already looking into the allegations that Mr. Johnson assaulted his former companion, Sherr-una Booker, on Oct. 31, 2009.
Subsequent revelations — that Mr. Paterson had contacted Ms. Booker while she was seeking an order of protection against Mr. Johnson, and that the State Police might have sought to discourage her from taking legal action against Mr. Johnson — led Mr. Paterson to drop his bid for election and prompted the resignations of five senior administration officials, including the top two officials at the State Police.
In her report, Ms. Kaye found that another senior aide to Mr. Paterson, Clemmie L. Harris Jr., and Charles Day, the former commanding officer of the executive protection detail of the State Police, had also engaged in inappropriate conduct in their efforts to contact Ms. Booker.
Below is some text from the report released Wednesday. The full report can be found at "News Links" at wkbw.com
There is no evidence that Governor Paterson committed Witness Tampering or any related offense. Because there is no evidence that the Governor knew that Booker was or was about to be called as a witness in an action or proceeding on February 7, or that he attempted to induce her not to appear in court or testify, or otherwise engaged in any fraud or deceit to affect her testimony, none of the elements of Witness Tampering or any related offense has been met.