Fired Buffalo cop continues fight for pension

Posted at 1:28 PM, Nov 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-03 18:20:34-04

Eight years after a Buffalo Police officer was fired following a physical confrontation with another officer, her supporters are taking their fight straight to the New York State Comptroller.

A petition with 170,000 signatures from around the country, calling for the state to reconsider granting Horne a pension, was presented Thursday morning at CAO Masten Resource Center in Buffalo.  A 10-day campaign involving those supporters will begin November 10.

The campaign is called "10 year/10 day" and Horne's supporters plan to flood NYS Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli's officer with phone calls, letters, emails and social media messages asking to have her pension application re-evaluated.

Cariol Horne was involved in an incident in 2006 where she responded to a call of an officer in trouble at a home on Walden Avenue.  

Horne was punished when the department said she interfered with a fellow officer while he was arresting a man. Horne maintained Officer Gregory Kwiatkowski was abusing the black suspect.

Horne spoke exclusively with 7Eyewitness News in 2014 where she describes the incident in detail.  She says after grabbing his arm to stop an illegal choke hold, Kwiatkowski punched her in the face.

Her 19 year career ended in 2008 when the BPD fired Horne for her involvement in the 2006 incident.  She originally applied for her pension in 2007, while still employed by the department.  Kwiatkowski remained on the force, but was indicted on federal civil rights violations against black teen suspects in 2014.  He has since retired from the department.

A timeline of Horne's decade long struggle can be read here.

Here's a link to Horne's Change.org petition.