Peekskill Democratic Majority’s Latest Target – The Volunteer Firefighters

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The Peekskill Democrats are at it again. It has been well documented over the last decade by actions, policies and public comments that the members of the Peekskill Democratic Party, especially those in public office, have utter contempt for local law enforcement. They treat the police as the enemy, and have gone so far as to appoint their friends as local justices just to prevent criminal convictions and fines imposed on their friends and family. InsidePEEK has reported on this pattern repeatedly over the previous year – most recently for their vote against accepting a donation of a new drone for the Police Department.

Now they are setting their sights on one of Peekskill’s most respected and VITAL organizations, the Peekskill Volunteer Firefighters. InsidePEEK has been barraged with emails regarding the attempt by the Democratic majority on the Common Council to oust the Peekskill Fire Chief, who has been dedicated firefighter for decades from a respected long-time Peekskill family. They claim it is a conflict for the Chief to continue because his son is becoming a member of the career firefighting staff. InsidePEEK has discovered that the Democratic Council Majority told the City Manager to demand the Chief’s resignation or the son cannot be hired for a career position. Why do this?

Come to find out Drew Claxton and Kathie Talbot were part of the Council during the Mary Foster administration that created a convoluted and poorly thought out nepotism policy. It has been the goal of Foster, Claxton and the Democrats to find a way to get rid of the volunteer firefighting force and they see this as an opportunity to make that happen. The new firehouse was the original vehicle to fade out the volunteers but that has taken too long to come about so this opportunity presents itself for them to take advantage of.

Their grand plan may have backfired on them in a big way.

Social media has been on fire since the Chief’s resignation came to light a few days ago. The general public is outraged about this issue, and rightfully so. InsidePEEK has received a record number of comments from our readers over this and they clearly show the backlash about to be brought against the Democratic Majority. InsidePEEK predicts they will not succeed in their attempt to have the Chief resign. Especially since it has been shown the policy as written does not apply in this specific case. The Chief is elected by the members of the department and has no direct supervision or influence over his son as a career firefighter.

It seems strange what Claxton, McKenzie, Noodle Rainey and Talbot see as a professional “conflict” requiring someone’s resignation from their elected post.

Hmmm, let’s look back over this past year: Claxton, McKenzie, Noodle Rainey and Talbot got caught holding an illegal meeting and taking an illegal vote to pass an illegal budget, they lose in court and violate the City Charter – did anyone resign? Nope.

Claxton got caught committing serious fiscal improprieties, illegally obtains grant funding for a building she owns and is the personal residence of her son, does not pay the money back when caught, admits she improperly signed the documents to obtain the ill-gotten funds – did she resign? Nope.

McKenzie gets caught red-handed sharing confidential emails regarding a Personnel issue, thus illegally exposing an employee to the press. The employee is humiliated in public and found to not have committed what McKenzie accused him of, violating his constitutional rights to due process and privacy – did she resign? Nope.

Noodle Rainey is discovered to have an outstanding warrant against him from an upstate New York town/college for purposely not paying a restaurant bill and fleeing the area. Once made public, Noodle’s Democratic Party “friends” went to the location and made a deal to pay the money owed and a fine to satisfy the authorities – did he resign? Nope.

These are just a few of the violations made by these elected officials who found no need to follow the ethics or criminal laws of the city –but – they want a sitting Volunteer Fire Chief to resign his position (with just 18 months left to serve) over the hiring of his son – who has earned the career position through taking a test and graduating from the fire academy. He has commendably accomplished this on his own. His father had nothing to do with his hiring and will not be directly supervising him in his job.

InsidePEEK agrees with Mayor Catalina who is upset over this situation and is calling on the Common Council members to vote to keep the Chief in place. Councilman Torres and Vesce support allowing the Chief to finish his term. Only one Democrat on the Council will be needed to make that happen. Only one Democrat will be needed to have the guts to go against their party and do the right thing for Peekskill. We’ll see if Claxton even shows up for the meeting. She misses so many and always seems to miss meetings where ‘controversial’ votes are required. Maybe she and her Democratic colleagues will be shamed enough to agree to let the chief stay.

According to a number of our readers – if the Chief is ultimately forced to resign, then the volunteer firefighting force is prepared to turn in their gear and walk away. That will be a very dangerous and expensive scenario for the citizens of Peekskill.

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Peekskill Judge Melissa Loehr Caught In Ethics Code Violation

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Well, that didn’t take long. InsidePEEK has been informed of a serious violation of ethics by Peekskill’s new Associate Judge Melissa Loehr. We have been reporting on the unethical and partisan manner in which both Peekskill judges have been selected and the reasons for their selection – protection for their family and friends and political advancement of careers. How right we were!

Recently, Loehr’s daughter was scheduled to appear in the Town of Cortlandt Court on three occasions – she never showed up. When she was finally forced to appear before Judge McCarthy, she was charged with a routine $300 bail for release. We leave out her name and infraction because this story is not about that – it is about what happened next.

Upon discovering her daughter’s situation, Judge Loehr did what all judges know is inappropriate, unethical and a serious violation of the judicial code of conduct – she called the Cortlandt Court to seek special favor for her daughter! She first called as the mother and asked for the name of the presiding judge for her daughter’s case and was upset that bail was set for her daughter. She didn’t like the explanation she received about her daughter’s situation and then asked “do you know who I am” and identified herself as a Peekskill City Court Judge – all in an authoritarian tone as to scare and intimidate the court clerk. Loehr’s daughter must have known this would happen – she acted in a defiant and disrespectful way toward the judge during her hearing. She knew mommy would be ‘taking care of it’ for her. It didn’t work and now has backfired.

This story has been corroborated and verified by court personnel.

It is disturbing enough to have judges who are ultra-partisan but to have judges who blatantly disregard ethics and law to show favoritism to family, and in such an open way, is unacceptable.

Unless a defendant is a member of the Peekskill Democratic Party, a friend or family of a member, or a potential voter for Democratic candidates – you have little chance of fair treatment in the Peekskill City Court. There have been many cases – too numerous to mention – where the Peekskill judge waived fines that were required or, in some cases, even counseled the defendant from the bench on how to avoid a guilty charge and/or penalty!

If you are ever scheduled to appear in front of either of the two Peekskill City Court Judges and are not ‘connected’ as described above – request a change in venue or you may surely regret it.

The situation at the Peekskill City Court is not good for the City of Peekskill. It is embarrassing for the city and makes a mockery of the judicial system and NY court oversight. How can whoever is in charge of the Judicial District allow this behavior to continue? We know Judge Johnson has been reprimanded for his negative treatment of court employees and has been the source of over $200,000 in lost fine fees. Now Judge Loehr has shown the same pattern in just her first month on the bench!

We at InsidePEEK think it is time for a higher authority to intervene and clean up the Peekskill City Court. The Mike Morey, Drew Claxton, Mary Foster, Vivian McKenzie, Marybeth McGowan, Andy Torres, Kathie Talbot, Darrin Rigger, Andre Noodle Rainey political cabal damage must be repaired – for the sake of the citizens of Peekskill. Johnson and Loehr must go.

Related Posts:

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/16/peekskill-council-democrats-continue-unethical-ways-with-associate-judge-selection/

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/08/22/peekskill-dems-corruption-spreads-to-associate-judge-selection/

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