Greece police officer sues city over ex-chief’s crash handling

Greece police officer sues city over ex-chief’s crash handling

A Greece police officer who raised concerns about how city, department and Greece officials handled the 2021 accident that led to the resignation of former Greece Police Chief Andrew Forsyth has filed a lawsuit in federal court.

Casey Voelkl, a 19-year veteran of the Greece Police Department, filed a lawsuit last week against the department, the city and others, including city Supervisor Bill Relich, claiming city officials punished her after she contacted an outside agency to investigate. October 21, 2021 Crash. Last year Voelkl filed a Notice of claim that he wanted to file suit.

Voelkl, who was promoted to deputy chief in 2015, was promoted to officer in December 2021 after the town completed an internal investigation into the accident and how the department handled the investigation and its findings.

He still works for the department as a patrol officer. In the lawsuit, Voelkl said he was “scapegoated” and faced “unprecedented and illegal consequences that ultimately destroyed both his health and career.”

He is seeking $2 million in damages and reinstatement of his job as deputy chief and related benefits, including his salary and pension.

Casey Voelkl

According to the lawsuit, Voelkel said he was “treated like a criminal” when he was temporarily suspended so the city could finish its investigation in 2021.

“After nearly 20 years of impeccable service in Greece, in front of his colleagues, Deputy Chief Voyle was stripped of his cell phone, police ID, police uniform, access card, computer, badge and gun and was escorted off the premises like a criminal. Dressed in plain clothes, ” read the case. “As a result of the conduct of city officials, Voele has been anxious, nervous, fearful and unable to sleep,” the lawsuit states.

Unredacted accordingly Investigative report led by Joseph Morabito Although Voelkl, a retired deputy chief of the Rochester Police Department, was not physically at the scene that morning, he was impressed with how he responded because the department chief was involved in the incident.

Morabito, in his report, said Voel bore the brunt of the investigation, telling others to “do what they see fit” in how they handled the case. At the time of the accident, Voelkl was one of the department’s two deputy chiefs.

In court filings, Voelkl called the report a “sham” and said it contained numerous inaccuracies. He also alleged that he was illegally deposed and was not allowed a hearing in accordance with law.

Chief Andrew Forsyth wrecked his department-issued vehicle while driving on 390 North Thursday morning, a department spokesman said.  The Monroe County District Attorney's Office says the vehicle was totaled.

Chief Andrew Forsyth wrecked his department-issued vehicle while driving on 390 North Thursday morning, a department spokesman said. The Monroe County District Attorney’s Office says the vehicle was totaled.

Forsyth in December 2021 Pleaded guilty to driving while impaired, admitting he was intoxicated on October 21, 2021 around 1:30 a.m. when he crashed into a guard rail in the northbound lanes of Route 390. Forsyth initially told responding officers that he had swerved to avoid a deer and was trying to get back to a nearby station. That was a lie, District Attorney Sandra Doorley later determined.

Immediately after Forsyth pleaded guilty, Doorley said the DA’s office “had to make a case and make a case that was basically not investigated at all by the Greece Police Department. Their actions hindered that early morning investigation.”

In the lawsuit, Voelkl said his suspension and promotion appeared to be retaliation after he contacted the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office about 2.5 days after the collision, with concerns about how the city, the supervisor’s office and the police department were handling the investigation. He accused city officials of deliberately destroying his career “to protect their own reputations and retaliate against his whistleblowing activities.”

The resignation, described as “temporary” by department officials, has been in effect for more than a year, the lawsuit notes. Along with the promotion, there was a loss of other benefits, including a 32% pay cut and damage to his reputation. Voelkl described the punishment as “shocking and severe.”

City officials said they could not comment on a pending lawsuit.

This article originally appeared in the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle: Casey Voyle sues Greece NY for crash handling of former chief

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