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Judge rules police and fire disciplinary records should be public; strikes down unions

Posted at 6:25 PM, Oct 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-06 18:26:02-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — State Supreme Court Justice Frank A. Sedita has struck down a union attempt to conceal disciplinary records from the public view.

Over the Summer the Buffalo police and fire unions sued to stop records from being released via Freedom of Information Law requests because they claim, these disciplinary records include unsubstantiated claims against civil service employees.

Sedita granted a temporary restraining order preventing the release of these records, which were only made available with the repeal of 50-a.

That restraining order and injunction was lifted today.

A spokesperson for the City of Buffalo says its mayor is happy with this ruling and has supported the records’ release in the interest of transparency.

The City says records will be made available as litigation continues.

The union, on the other hand, is deeply displeased with the ruling.

Buffalo Police Benevolent Association President John Evans released the following statement to 7 Eyewitness News:

“Obviously, we are disappointed but going forward our hope is that whatever records are released are accurate it is unfortunate that pending cases can be released in that the officer may be exonerated. But that is the way the judge ruled. We are discussing an appeal with our attorneys.”