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Erie County DA not charging Tonawanda mayor with a crime following corruption investigation

Posted at 1:36 PM, Nov 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-24 13:36:47-05

TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — Erie County District Attorney John Flynn will not charge two-term Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis with any crime after a 7 Eyewitness News investigation exposed eight counts of governmental corruption, and Davis admitted to at least one illegal act.

A spokesperson from the DA’s office declined an on camera interview regarding his investigation but released the following statement to 7 Eyewitness News:

“Our investigation into the complaint against City of Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis is closed. No criminal conduct was found that could be proven beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.”

Davis admitted on camera to stealing city funds after purchasing a plane ticket for his girlfriend at the time in 2017.

He defended his actions by saying he paid the money back. Our records show this was months later.

Mayor Davis was also under investigation by his own common council.

It formed an ethics committee to look into eight issues, on top of inappropriate use of government funds, including: securing bids for family members and friends, sending city employees to intimidate political rivals, conduct unbecoming of a city official and retaliation.

That ethics committee also cleared Davis stating at the conclusion of its 2018 investigation, “Although there appears to be some irregularities and poor judgment exhibited by certain individuals, nothing that we investigated rises to the level of unethical behavior and/or violations of ethical conduct.”

You can read our I-Team report on Davis’ alleged corruption spanning 13 years here.