New Canaan Police Officer Pickering Put on Leave-State’s Attorney Investigating

On Monday, March 11th, the NCPD honored part of a media FOI request and confirmed the officer on leave is Fred M. Pickering and they are running their own internal investigation on top of the States Criminal Investigation. This was a result of media pressure on the town 1st Selectman to get the cops to follow State FOI Laws about information on public servants put on leave. There are still unanswered questions on who is leading the investigation and why it’s being done by Pickering’ peers instead of an out of town police unit.

Update 3-9-13 11:30am: At least two employees of Tequila Mockingbird have said it was Lt. Fred Pickering who was in involved in the bar fight on February 23rd. Last night I stopped by the police station to see if Pickering was on duty but he wasn’t. The desk officer told me he didn’t know when he’d be back on duty. Pickering’s voicemail doesn’t say he’s on leave but the NCPD Chief also won’t answer emails asking when his senior officer will be returning for work. Attorney Gene Riccio told me he has been hired to represent Pickering and would not comment further on his client’s role in the alleged fight. Pickering has not returned a call for comment.

The 2011 NCPD annual report shows Lt. Pickering is in the top 6 of command for the 45 person force. He stated on the local Patch site once he needs 30 years of service to retire and started the job in May 1987. Pickering and his wife Mary Beth (a soccer coach) live at 129 Gower Rd in New Canaan. The modest 4 bedroom 3.5 bath house, that he bought two years after he started the force, is appraised at near $900,000. Pickering’s published earnings for 2012 is a little over $152k plus he can earn overtime or private service pay at $65 per hour with a four hour minimum. The police have still not told the press if the officer is on paid or unpaid leave although multiple publications including this one have made FOI request to get this information that is a matter of public interest (and paid for with our tax dollars).

The concern here is how did Officer Pickering handle himself while off duty with his friends who allegedly made racial slurs at another patron in Tequila Mockingbird. One witness, Kevin Jones, told me he heard someone called Pickering a ‘Pig’ and then more name calling happen, via Pickering’s crew, and then the altercation happen.

Pickering is the brother of the director of human resources for the town Cheryl Pickering Jones. The family has a history of working in fire, police, nursing services for New Canaan with deep roots tied to town government.

We are still waiting on the town attorney to give a legal opinion on if the NCPD has to honor the press FOI request to release the officer’s name. I first reported yesterday the State’s FOI commission believes they have to release the name of a public servant on leave. If the town attorney, Ira Bloom, denies the information we are seeking under Federal and State FOI laws I will file an appeal / complaint with the State FOI commission and I hope other local publications do the same.

3-9-13 3pm: The New Canaan Advertiser is also reporting Pickering is on leave and quotes sources that say it’s a paid leave. If Pickering is on paid leave, then given that’s funded by taxpayer dollars, the NCPD has to answer our FOI request. The public deserves to know who is running the investigation, who made the decision to put Pickering on paid leave, how long he’s been on it, and I’d like to see a copy of the police union contract that could show if they had to put him on paid leave or if they had an option. We also need confirmation if his weapons and badge have been turned back in while on leave.

3-10-13: Here is some interesting case law history on how Pickering and a few other NCPD handled a controversial DUI arrest in 2004 by a women who was having a reaction to medicine. In 2008 Pickering received the Police Meritorious Duty Award for his work in Domestic Violence cases.

3-12-13: The New Canaan Advertiser is reporting the name of the man accusing Pickering. Joel L. Anderson, of 186 Lakeview Ave, had been arrested by the NCPD in 2011 for allegedly stealing pot (but his arrest record was expunged and their are no convictions against Joel). Anderson’s address at the time of his arrest was in Section 8 Low-Income housing. He and two of his buddies were outed for the alleged pot heist after they reported the guy they might have stole it from had hit their car. It’s kind of a funny story. Sources close to Pickering have told me this is not the first time 24-year-old Anderson has tried to file a complaint against Pickering but I haven’t seen a 2nd complaint. The NAACP has gotten involved at some point in the complaints against Pickering and I have to wonder why Pickering wasn’t investigated by the State’s attorney before if there was a prior complaint?

Original Text
A New Canaan, Conn. police officer was put on leave and is under criminal investigation by the State’s attorney. The NCPD release a statement today that a person complained they were hit by the off-duty officer at a popular local watering hole, Tequila Mockingbird. The complaint said a fight started when a person in the officer’s group started racial slurs. The NCPD is not releasing the name of the officer and said the event happen February 23rd.

Josh Fisher, New Canaan Advertiser Editor in Chief, asked the NCPD Chief Nadriczny if the name would be released via a FOI request. The chief said no until the investigation is complete. The name of the complainant is also not disclosed.

If something sounds fishy here you’re right it is. Why are we just getting word of this on March 8th. If a cop is put on leave that is a matter of public interest, if public coffers are being used to pay him while he is on leave that is a mater of public interest. I spoke with Attorney Valica Harmon at the State’s FOI Commission who said, “There is no basis of fact for the Police to withhold the name of an officer that has been put on leave. That’s a personal decision and separate from the State’s attorney investigation. The public has a right to know if public coffers are being used to pay this person while on leave.”

I emailed and called Chief Nadriczny at 2pm today with a FOI request explaining the above. If he doesn’t respond with a name today the State’s FOI office said I should filed a complaint with the FOI commission.

I have also asked Chief Nadriczny if ANYONE involved in the incident was arrested for breach of peace, disorderly conduct or assault. You know the charges you usually see when there is bar fight by grown men.

At 2:45pm Chief Nadriczny wrote back saying

“Ms. Buhl -This is an ongoing, active criminal investigation and our press release contains the information we will release at this time.”

I also want to know if another town is being called in to run the investigation. Can the NCPD investigating one of their own?

Remember this is the same police unit who was investigated for racial profiling with traffic ticketing writing last year by the CHRO and was also involved in accepting free alarms from New Canaan Alarm company but no one was ever charged with wrong doing or fired.

New Canaan Patch/AOL editor Michael Dinan wrote in comments on his story about the event that the Patch would not allow readers to post comments speculating who the officer is. I find that ironic since AOL/Patch is known to encourage their editors to allow all kinds of speculative comments about people in town to get the page views up.

If you’ve heard who the officer is feel free to comment here and I’ll investigate it. The NCPD is paid with our tax dollars and we have the right to transparent information from them, which we are unfortunately not getting today. Based on the NCPD Chief’s refusal to honor the press FOI request I’ll be filing a complaint.

Here is the NCPD press release from 11:45am on 3-8-13:
NCPD Press Release Dispute Investigation 03-08-13

UPDATE 4:30pm: I spoke with Ira Bloom the town attorney who said he’s looking into if he thinks the NCPD have to release the officers name. The Advertiser also spoke with the town First Selectman who said he asked Bloom to look into it and they’d have an answer on Monday. If they say no I encourage every local publication to file a FOI complaint with the State Commission as they clearly think the NCPD has to comply.

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Comments

  1. Joe Taylor says:

    Looks like everything is catching up to Officer Pickering. About time! Talk about Karma

    • Patrick says:

      Jason was the bartender that night. Why do the cops need more people to come forward. If the person complained before 12am that night they would have had time to go down to the bar and investigate it. If they waited till the next day to look for witnesses then I think they will have a problem on their hands.

      • Jason needs to come forward. Fred Pickering is pure scum. And I hear almost everyone on the force dislikes him. Do yourself a favor NCPD get rid of the poison on the squad. Pickering that means you!!

  2. Fred's#1fan says:

    Don’t worry Fred pickering! You’ll make a great mall cop!

    • Schmuck da Po-lice says:

      I disagree. Someone who can’t mind their manners, act their age, keep their hands to themselves, or not take advantage of having a badge should not have authority in any situation. Fred Pickering would make a great crash test dummy (I heard he has quite the driving record).

    • He would never make as a mall cop! He was an angry little child and now an angry little man… He needs a nite shit at a graveyard no one will care if he’s drunk or being a complete ass. It’s not your fault Fred Pickering your just a DICK!!!

  3. eye witness news says:

    Here are some tidbits for your crimestopper notebooks.

    A lietenant in the NC Police force makes $98,338 plus is paid for 12 vacation days.

    According to Town Records just published Lt. Pickering in calendar year 2012 earned a total gross income of $152,111.71.

    Lt. Pickering’s sister is Cheryl Pickering Jones who is the Director of Human Resources in the Town of New Canaan, who reports to First Selectman Mallozzi.

    Ms. Jones, despite her familial association, had no problem permmitting Chief Nadriczny releasing the name of the DUI arrest of a snow plow driver, who was terminated by Ms. Jones for endangering the publi safety.

    Chief Nadriczny has a history of violations of the Freedom of Information Act as noted in the NC Alarm investigation in 2007, which Ms. Jones failed to declare her conflict of interest.

    Baron Acton, the noted British Parliamentarian and historian, noted in a letter to Biship Mandel Creighton in 1887:

    “Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely”

    The General Counsel of the FOI Commission, Attorney Clifton Leonhardt was copied on this news story by investigative reporter Teri Buhl at clifton.leonhardt@ct.gov.

    Cordially,

    Eye Witness News–New Canaan

    • Concerned says:

      The snowplow driver mentioned in this article was not terminated by Ms. Pickering Jones. He was transferred to another Department.You may want to double check your facts.

      • All in the Family ? says:

        Why did Ms.Pickering Jones allow an employee to keep his job, after damaging a town vehicle, while on duty & D.U.I. ? It’s all starting to come out now !

      • eye witness news says:

        Dear concerned:

        I corrected the typo at 9:38am, shortly after my post about the snow plow driver being terminated.

        My facts were corrected before you wrote.

        However, the issues remain the same.

        Have you ever seen the Acceptance of Gifts, Memorandum of Understanding on Gift Policy issued by Ed Nadriczny.

        Send me your email address to mnowacki@aol.com and i can send you a scan of a document the Police Chief withheld from me under the FOI Act.

        Mallozzi is just as much to blame here for not providing documents about a suspended employee who is being paid because of a union contract that protects cops from termination without certain grievance procedures.

        Where is our Police Commissioner Jim Cole on the issue of releasing a name and assuring the public that all weapons issued by the NCPD have been removed from Pickering’s possession?

        I can also send you a report on Joe Pearson, another NCPD cop who has had six “incidents” in which he has damaged police cars by his reckless conduct in the use of public property.

        On the night of Feb. 22, 2010, Pearson actually hit a fellow police officer pulling out in his car, which placed the officer on disability for a month.

        All unreported by Chief Nadriczny until I sought the release of the Pearson report under provisions in the FOI Act.

        My facts are impeccably researched…I just can’t type so well at times.

  4. eye witness news says:

    Typo on previous post

    The New Canaan public works employee who was a snow plow officer was NOT terminated.

    It should be noted that the overtime earned by Lt. Pickering and others are not subject to pension consideration.

    The union contract for the NCPD officers was unsuccessfully negotiated by Cheryl Pickering Jones that resulted in a delay in the passing of a new contract.

    Ms. Jones, has refused to require the Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance to be incorporated in previous union contracts.

    Isn’t it time that Ms. Jones be reassigned to other administrative duties in order to remove her as an obstruction for the conflicts of interest ordinance to be incorporated in the upcoming union contract negotiations?

  5. Fred's #2 Fan says:

    Eyewitness, you forgot to add in his membership at the Winter Club that the rest of us members pay for. Does his “ethical” sister know about these perks for the NCPD?? Keep digging Teri, it’s ugly!

  6. So sad that NCPD is soo corrupt. I had to move out of New Canaan due to multiple harassments from Pickering. My apologies I never knew he would make lieutenant. They should of knew before hiring him when he received a DUI before joining the force. Sad sad sad!! New Canaan what’s your deal?? Stick up for your residents NOT this corrupt officer!!!

  7. eye witness news says:

    Fred’s #2 Fan

    Do you know for a fact Fred has a reduced cost membership at New Canaan Country Club?

    Chief Nadriczny has refused under the FOI Act to reveal any public records that indicate which NCPD officers are members of the NCCC or the New Canaan Winter Club.

    Do you think that it is a conflict of interest for Cheryl Pickering Jones, the sister of the alleged “Forest Street Brawler”or “To Kill a Tequila Mockingbird” sequel, to have participated in the New Canaan Alarm Company coverup?

    Inquiring minds would also like to know why Cheryl Pickering Jones seems to also be at the center of the police contract negotiations and also the Jeb Walker pension debacle.

    Time to renovate the employees of Town Hall an clean up the toxic waste dump that has existing for years?

    Perhaps we can arrange for a sink hole to appear magically at 77 Main Street?

  8. Jenny Sanborn says:

    Great Work Teri. There doesn’t appear to seem to be any reason for Pickering not to come forward. If he wants to earn back the town trust he should just tell us what happen.
    The New Canaan Police love to give out information at their pleasure and on their own time which isn’t right. Town Journalist could put more pressure on them to expose the facts early on. But the Cops aren’t use to that and react with silent defense to cover up their flaws.

  9. These above comments are a load of BS – meant to slander a great person and an officer with a 26 year sterling police record. It is very obvious that those commenting above, do not know Fred and are out to hurt his image. My bet is the they are coming out with some axe to grind. Perhaps people he has arrested before?

    He has never gotten a DUI. This is a blatant lie. He and his family are beloved in town. There is no conspiracy.

    Town residents are lucky to have Fred and his wonderful family in NC. Anyone who knows Fred does not, for one second, believe any of the lies being written about what happened. He has plenty of witnesses re what really happened on Sat night. This “incident” was a non event, and deliberately blown way out of proportion. The truth will come out and many people will owe him an apology.

    Unfortunately for him, NCPD has to play this by the book and because he is a public figure, and in cases like these, the police are treated as guilty until proven innocent. This is a CYA move by the dep’t. His colleagues don’t believe that anything untoward happened, nor do the many town residents who know him.

    It would be interesting to learn the identity of the alleged “victim”. Is he or she an upstanding citizen? Someone who contributes to society? I don’t know, but since the facts are coming out, let’s print this person’s name and do some research… If reporters are interested in t

    • Teri Buhl says:

      I would print the name of the person who filed the complaint if I had it and have tried to find it. If you know it send me an email and I will try to fact check it.
      You can reach me at teribuhl@gmail.com
      The NCPD year end financial report shows there is a complaint made once a year against an NCPD officer but I have haven’t seen a State’s Attorney investigate one yet so the nature of this situation stands out.
      To me this story is about the NCPD ignoring the press FOI request. If they just released his name in the press release they wouldn’t look like they are trying to cover something up. There is a pattern of selective information given by these public servants and ignoring FOI laws meant to bring transparency to govt operations.

  10. The truth, let’s do some investigation of both sides.

    Cowards can hide behind anonymous blogs and take cheap shots, but let’s find out what really happened.

    I know Fred. He is one of our best, and it pains me to see him unfairly maligned like this.

  11. Truth Seeker says:

    Officer Pickering is a huge asset to the town – these are a bunch of cheap shots being taken in an attempt to tarnish his reputation, Too Bad – it is not going to work. Shame on you for printing such filth.

    • Teri Buhl says:

      You have the same IP address as NClifer there is no need to make up names to post the same comment making it look like it came from more than one person.

  12. Truth seeker says:

    No attempt to pad responses, I submitted the entries last night and they disappeared for a while, I thought that either the comments were improperly submitted, censored or that there was a problem with the sign in name. I am very glad to see them on your blog – thank you for including them. I was pleasantly surprised.

    Re the anonomity of my entries, let’s take a look at the entries above – Fred’s #1 Fan, Fred’s # 2 Fan, Shmuck Da-Police… Come on. If you look at their entries, they are obviously not adding any valuable content – just engaging in name calling. I challenge anyone to find a record of any DUI, or record of public urination. Where is the proof of any of this? Show it and I will shut up, acknowledge that I was wrong and cease commenting. Aren’t people presumed innocent until being proven guilty in this country? Do you really think that this is a venue where giving one’s name is a smart move? Look at the info that you reported on the Pickering family! Who needs that? The difference between my comments and many of those above, is that I am not attempting to tear anyone down or engaging in name calling or untruths.

    I hope that the truth will come out in this case with Officer Pickering. I cannot comment on some of the other people mentioned in some of the entries above, as I don’t know the other officer. There are a lot of people who witnessed what really happened, and know how much this event has been dramatically blown out of proportion. Things will become clear shortly. I just think that it is a shame that people take cheap shots and lie just to try and drag someone down.

    All I suggest is people focus on facts in this case. Your comments re the possible obscuring of past incidents, I cannot comment on that- I have no knowledge about what has happened in the past. I just think that we all need to be careful here not to treat someone unfairly because of your frustration (deserved or undeserved) about accessing info. Remember, this involves someone’s career, reputation and family. If you are mad at the dep’t fine, but I think that it is incredibly unfair to take it out on Fred.

    Teri: re this alleged “victim” – how did you get Fred’s name in the first place? I would think that as a accomplished investigative reporter, you would take the time to find out the facts on both sides of the case. It just seems too easy to rail against a cop as I’m sure you can see – there are many with an axe to grind who simply like to attack before they think. No attack on you here, but by just focusing on a police officer, I think that you are continuing to feed the bias that many of your readers live off of. Let’s find out who this person is, and do some homework about this individual. Is he or she credible? Is there some past here? Any comments from a witness? It would be very interesting to find out.

    Also, why publish his address, salary, home value, wife’s name and profession? What does this have to do with anything about this alleged incident? Other than prove that you can read a phone book and use Zillow, how is that pertinent? I just don’t see it.

    • Teri Buhl says:

      Comments are moderated on this news site as I have stated on the About page. That means they don’t appear right away and some don’t get published.

      I think Fred needs to encourage the force to release the complaint and comment on the record about the allegations if he doesn’t want a story with just one side cause that’s all the NCPD has given us so far.

      If anyone knows the complaint’s name please email me and I’ll look into it.

  13. Why all the negativity? This article is about the NCPD’s failure to release a name that the public had the right to know. It is not about the individual or individuals involved. I am willing to bet that Officer Pickering has as many supporters as he has emotional haters. I do not know Officer Pickering’s record or any other information other than the fact that he is a public servant who has a job that makes him a target in situations like this. I would also be willing to bet that should the other names be released, there will be less negativity towards them as none of the people commenting here have ever received a traffic violation from one of them. Please stay focused on the article and let’s not turn this into a character assignation.

    • Seems like the 1% of New Canaan that actually cares for this coward finally has something to say. All fingers point at Fred. Come clean and just because you’re a police officer this doesn’t mean you’re unstoppable. Done done and done!!

  14. eye witness news says:

    To all:

    The Town Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance requires public officials to properly abide by an oath of office.

    In failing to disclose public information about “paid administrative leave” which utilizes taxpayer money, Mr. Mallozzi makes a “false claim” that this matter involving Lt. Pickering is not a “personnel matter”.

    When a public employee is “suspended”, union contracts determine a course of options available to the police department. The decision to put Lt. Pickering on “paid administrative leave” is not the only course of options available to the Chief Nadriczny or to the First Selectman.

    The First Selectman yesterday, in a quote posted on the New Canaan Advertiser, claimed he did not view this as a “personnel matter.”

    How is it that Cheryl Pickering Jones has since 2006, when she was hired, been involved in union contract negotiations, which were unsuccessfully negotiated for renewal in June 2010, when the old contract expired.

    Who made the decision to place Lt. Pickering on “paid administrative leave”? The public has the right to ask these questions.

    Where has the Police Commission, to who Chief Nadriczny report, been since February 23, 2013. Have Jim Cole and his two police commissioners been conducting clandestine (non-publicly announced meetings), like they did in 2007 when the Police Commission was meeting unlawfully to revoke the penalties in the New Canaan Alarm Company investigation?

    The bloggers yesterday on this site revealed for the first time, confirmation of Fred Pickering’s membership (acquired without paying an initiation fee and at significantly reduced membership fees) at the New Canaan Club.

    Since June 18, 2008, a Acceptance of Gifts Memorandum of Understanding has existed in the NCPD, which was uncovered in January 2011, under provisions in the FOI Act, in which Chief Nadriczny refused to turn over documents he was required to do by law.

    Since January 7, 2012, Mr. Mallozzi has refusedd to rescind this non-public policy of the NCPD, which also grants benefits to memberships to NC Country Club to teachers who live in the town of New Canaan for more than one year.

    Such non-public policies of the NCPD, also includes similar membership opportunities at the NC Winter Club.

    Sections 17.1-17.8 contains a Code of Ethics an conflicts of interest ordinance, which the First Selectman is required to uphold in a uniform manner.

    Policemen, teachers and firefighters are the only ones identified in the three page list of Gifts. That implies all of the other town employees are not provided the “outside employment” benefits.

    I have documents which show that as many as 40% of the cell phone stops in New Canaan are waived off–reducing the reiumbursement from the State of Connecticut for a portion of those fines which are returned to the Town of New Canaan.

    I have requested information from Chief Nadriczny for the last fifteen months about who on his staff has such memberships at the NC Country Club. The Chief refused to identify any individuals, claiming there are no records responsive to your request.

    What is upsetting here is that the rule of law doesn’t apply to our public officials–which is contained in Sections 17.1-17.8 of the Town Charter referenced as the Code of Ethics.

    There was no enforcement of the Code of Ethics in the internal investigation 3.07 conducted in 2007, regarding the fact that Leon Krolikowski and 11 other uniformed officers signed agreements to pay for the alarm services they admitted they were receiving for no cost or highly reduced installing charges, from the period of time of September 1, 2007 to the present.

    The Chief again indicated to me that there was no “compliance” requirement set forth on the payment of the services to New Canaan Alarum from September 1, 2007 to the present.

    Last Friday, before the articles appeared I filed a letter with the NCPD, Mr. Mallozzi and other Town officials, requesting an external investigation of the abuse of power of Jim Cole in 2007, the misuse of executive sessions, the editing of public minutes and other matters involving the assignment of overtime to the most tenured NCPD officers, which are alleged to abridge the Town Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance.

    Mr. Mallozzi and others are currently under investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office for violations of 18 U.S.C. Section 1346, which is incorporated as a provision in the RICO statutes for the failure to enforce the Town Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinane, because such benefits as “alarm services” are nothing more than kickbacks to public employees, who don’t pay taxes on such services rendered.

    The interviews of the 12 NCPD officers are in the possession of the U.S. Attorney’s office who is making copies of the CD’s I acquired in January 2011, after Chief Nadriczny refused to turn over copies of the CD’s claiming that transcripts would have to be ordered that would have cost me thousands of dollars.

    No NC Lifer, there are substantive issues here regarding the lack of the enforcement of the Town Code of Conduct and conflicts of interest ordinance at the NCPD, including the failure to abide by the FOI Act requirements to release all relevant internal communications between Chief Nadriczny, Robert Mallozzi III, Human Resources Director Cheryl Jones, and the payroll processing agents who were asked to process the “paid administrative leave” paperwork for Lt. Pickering.

    What we want is transparency from Chief Nadriczny on the details of the conduct of one of his “off duty” officers–and not some obstruction of the rights of citizens to public records involving “paid administrative leave”.

    We also want to know if there have been meetings conducted by Jim Cole and the members of the Police Commission since February 24, 2013 regarding this incident. Any such meeting of the Police Commission must be announced, and a matter of “paid administrative leave” to be placed on a public agenda posted on the Town of New Canaan’s website.

    I have seen no public agenda posted for the Police Commission since its last agenda and meeting conducted on February 20, 2013.

    I will be requesting tomorrow, all emails and internal communications pursuant to the application of the FOI Act.

    Stay tuned to this blog for details or contact me at mnowacki@aol.com and I will be happy to invite you to my home to inspect the public records on the New Canaan Alarm Company investigation cover-up.

    Watergate looks like child’s play by comparison to how Jim Cole and the police commission operate to engage in coverups like the New Canaan Alarm Company or the failure to properly supervise the overtime in the department and other misconduct issues.

    We need new leadership in Town Hall inasmuch as Mr. Mallozzi has refusedd to rescind the Acceptance of Gifts Memorandum of Understanding which is alleged to have violated federal law 18 U.S.C. 1346 since it was implemented on June 20, 2008 by the Police Commission’s endorsement.

    Mr. Mallozzi has refused to respond to the rescinding of this non-public policies on gifts….and the refusal of Mr. Mallozzi to enforce the Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance is once again apparent in his claim that this investigation on Lt. Pickering is not a “personnel matter” but a “criminal matter”.

    An unpaid administrative leave can always be reversed at a later point in time. A paid administrative leave is more difficult to revoke.

    Lt. Pickering is not exempt from the Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance enforcement, which is within the purview of the First Selectman. I have a copy of Lt. Pickering’s endorsement of the Code of Ethics signed in August 2000, if anyone is interested.

    • Reasonable says:

      What does an officer being accused of something (and we have no idea who is making the accusation or what is being accused and if it has any merit whatsoever) have to do with conflict of interest?

      It is completely appropriate that the officer continues to be paid while the authorities determine if he actually did anything wrong. If the accusation proves baseless, why should he and his family have their livelihood taken away? They are already being put through an emotional ringer?

      • Teri Buhl says:

        I think it’s ok for him to be on paid leave unless he was arrested but my issue is the town has the tell the public if he’s on paid leave, when that happen ,and who decided that–and of today they are not doing that on the record.

  15. RandyTheRam says:

    Have known Fred for 30+years. He is a good man and true professional. Realize that being a cop in NC involves babysitting spoiled “adults” more than fighting “real” crime. That doesnt diminish all the great work Frd/NCPD does on a daily basis.

  16. Dorothy Graci says:

    It is time the Chief of NCPD step’s down. The head of patrol Leon also needs to go, this town NCPD command is playing games on traffic stops, in addition is allowing Leon who has a 2000 billable hour yearly law pratice (40 hours a week) to praticew law. Checking his juris number (422116) in the Ct courts system shows all of his active cases, which even if you cut it back to half, he is billing his clients and the NCPD for time he is supposed to be working for NCPD.

    Do we want him as our next chief of police? Wrong………..!!!!! A FOIA request of his time sheets and expenses for the last 3-5 years by the Media and match up case number using his juris number will prove what Leon is doing.

    We need a new Chief from the outside, retired Capitan or Deputy Inspector from NYCPD, or a retired FBI special agent in charge, i.e New Haven or Westchester, or Long Island who want to live in this wonderful town. This town has in the past helped in the housing expenses, and to attract someone good that needs to be offered again. The quality of candiates would be high to choose from with that perk offered.

    It is time to look close at the top 3 command of NCPD.

    • Teri Buhl says:

      I’d like to hear more about Leon’s side work – please email me Dorothy at teribuhl@gmail.com

      • Teri, if you use the information I posted you will uncover a lot of information. The chief is also dirty, and you will find it out if you do a FOIA on Leon. He will (chief) will try to cover it up, or even harass you for the request. This is the tip of the ice berg, the town has some good cops, and they dont include the Chief or Leon.
        They all know (other police officers) Leon is nuts. Cole is out of line and protects them, (Ed and Leon) and they (police officers) via a spokes person told the first selectman there would be a no confidance vote if Leon got to be chief.

  17. Kevin Jones says:

    When the facts come out, people will be surprised at the lack of support that the town has for its police officers and employees. I was there that night and the situation started when one person called the off-duty police officer a “pig”. It sounds like the police officer had arrested the person a few times so there was past history. The police officers’ friends got involved and I heard some bad language, but I’m not sure if anyone used a racial insult. There was a little pushing, but the police officer actually calmed the situation down and prevented it from turning ugly. The whole thing was just kind of silly and stupid.

    • TheRealReality says:

      So your name is Kevin, you were at tequila the night of the incident, and you are trying to make it seem like Pickering did nothing wrong. You aren’t the same Kevin that was with Pickering that night and is under criminal investigation are you?

  18. Sean -NC Res. says:

    Seems to me that it should be fairly easy to establish whether or not there was a barroom brawl at a New Canaan restaurant…ask the staff. The people who punched a clock that night would know exactly who did what to whom, and when. Also, it seems that in the rush to vilify a local officer of the law, two very important questions have not been asked; who is the person filing the complaint, and what was his or her involvement in the incident?

    If it is an upstanding member of the community that we live in – we should know. Should it turn out to be some idiot with an axe to grind, we need to know that too.

    There is a lot of innuendo flying around, but none of us can make an intelligent assumption until we know more of the facts.

    An important fact that I would like to know; did a pillar of the community file a valid grievance with the NCPD, or was it a punk with a prior conviction looking to exact some type of revenge against a member of our police dpt?

    “FOI” – how ‘bout just “I.” Information. Was there a fight? Was an off duty cop throwing punches? What is the Character of the complainant? Seems to me this would make a far more compelling story than a cops name.

    • Teri Buhl says:

      The Tequila staff I asked didn’t recognize or know the name of the person who could have filed the complaint. You’re right there is a lot we don’t know which is why the NCPD should release the complaint or hurry up in their investigation and then still release the full report. They’ve had enough time figure out what happen and who was there.
      Complaints are filed in the past against officers but we don’t see them get suspended or at least the NCPD hasn’t told u they were suspended…which is a whole another problem. You can see the number of police complaints filed in the annual report which is on the NCPD website.

      I don’t get why Pickering’s friends haven’t been arrested for assault if there was a fight?

      • Reasonable says:

        Given what Kevin, who is the only eye witness in any of these posts, wrote above, it seems like the answer to your question is clear–there were no arrests because there was no fight. And it sounds like Officer Pickering conducted himself perfectly.

        I totally agree that the NCPD and whatever other authorities are looking at this should wrap this thing up. From what Kevin writes it sounds like this is a tempest in a teapot. Why has it taken two weeks?

        And given the fact that the Officer’s name has been made public, and he is being dragged through the mud (at least by some lousy people on this site), I agree that the whole report should be made public. This is someone’s career, reputation and livelihood that have been put in jeopardy. If it in fact turns out that the accuser’s claims are without merit and that Officer Pickering conducted himself properly, everyone needs to be made aware of this, so that he is vindicated and restored.

        • Teri Buhl says:

          If it turns out the complaining person made a false police report do you think they should be charged?

          • Sean -NC Res. says:

            You pose a pretty interesting question, which on the surface should provide a straight forward answer, because it sure sounds like it should be a crime to file a false police report. However, the individual is most probably in need of, and far better served by, serious help – if they made the whole thing up. And if that scenario proves to be the case, a lot of people would owe the people of New Canaan, the NCPD, and this officer a very heartfelt apology.

            To this point, I think The Advertiser should also come under a bit of fire for irresponsible journalism, if this turns out to be a completely fabricated story. Reporters and the outlets they work for, owe it to the general public to fully research a situation before they write something which most (if not all) readers will generally accept at face value. The National Enquirer and their counterparts are expected to exaggerate, fabricate and basically beguile for the fun of the story. Shame on us if we believe that Elvis fathered an alien baby while hiking in the Rockies last month; but when the Advertiser runs a headline,
            “New Canaan police officer on leave after off-duty bar fight”

            A. That fight better have happened.
            B. The reporter and his paper better have it corroborated sideways.

            If it was only alleged, rumored, purported or merely being investigated –it should have been in the headline. One of the people posting on this blog claimed to have been at the restaurant and witnessed the events:
            “There was a little pushing, but the police officer actually calmed the situation down and prevented it from turning ugly. The whole thing was just kind of silly and stupid.”

            How many people from the restaurant (customer or staff) did the Advertiser question…and why weren’t they referenced in the article tiled above?
            …you and I seem to agree on the most relevant point here – the facts need to come out. And that doesn’t mean 4 months from now!

          • Teri Buhl says:

            Sean – read the police press release at the end of the story you will see they say there was an altercation

  19. eye witness news says:

    Question:

    I wonder if Leon Krolikowski asked for a copy of the bar bill that night from all paties in this fist-to-no-cuffs to determine whether they asked Fred to take a breathalizer test?

    When did the NCPD knock on Fred’s door that night? Did they come to his house to investigate the incident?

    Inquiring minds want to know the answers to these questions.

    As for Captain K’s running a legal practice on the side, I can provide the following details. When Leon got his law license, there was a different Police Commissioner in charge. I retrieved the Police Commission minutes in which Krolikowski was required annually to get annual permission of the Police Commission to review the records of his law practice to ensure it did not conflict with Town of New Canaan business.

    By going into the subsequent meetings after Jim Cole was appointed Police Commissioner, there was no such annual request by Captain K. which was a requirement set forth in 2003. I have the minutes to the meeting at which the terms of the approval of Captain K.’s practice of law was defined by the previous Police Commission.

    There hasn’t been an iota of supervision of how Leon spends his time during the day. If you saw his parking spot occupied, it was an uncommon occurance.

    Captain K. has been double dipping for awhile…and that is why his name is never published as one of the top earners.

    The Town Code does not permit public officials/ employees to hold more than one job, without permission of the governing body to approve such employment to ensure there is no conflict of interest.

    By going to the jud.ct.gov website and clicking on case information, and typing in Captain K.’s juris number, you can see the cases he is currently working on and who his clients are.

    I raised this issue with Robert Mallozzi and Chief Nadriczny last fall, when Leon’s car never seemed to be at the NCPD, when I was there doing my FOI investigative work.

    So if that helps anyone understand that Captain K. is the master of his own ship and was among those receiving services from the NC Alarm Company, who had his penalty voided by Ed Nadriczny (Captain K. isn’t governed by the union contract).

    I have a CD copy of Captain K.’s interview with Captain Bendernagel, Cheryl Pickering Jones and Attorney Michael Rose in attendance. I have also notes from Ed’s personal interview of Captain K. which was not recorded.

    Captain K. addressed the Code of Ethics violations in his interview….but no where in Bendernagel’s reports or Nadriczny’s reviews was there ever a mention of the Code of Conduct abridgments.

    Of course six weeks after the penalties agreed to in sworn affidavits that I have copies of that were acquired under the FOI Act, Jim Cole and the Police Commission voided all of the penalties in non-public meetings of the Police Commission….and no minutes were ever recorded of the decision to revoke the penalties.

    Of course, all of that evidence has been turned over to the U.S. Attorney’s office on Feb. 1, 2013 in New Haven at 11am, and now those who were chronicled in my letter to U.S. Attorney David Fein, await the possibility a grand jury will be seated and a number of people for the NCPD be indicted for “honest services fraud” under 18 U.S.C. Section 1346.

    Then the NCPD officers, members of the Police Commission and others will have the chance to plea bargain for jail time, fines, or subject themselves to the scrutiny of a jury trial or a federal magistrate proceeding.

    The U.S. Attorney office (Attorny David Sheldon)would be happy to receive letters in support of the prosecution of these corrupt public officials. You can write to Attorney Sheldon at the Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney’s office, 157 Church Street, New Haven, CT 06510.

  20. eye witness news says:

    For those who don’t know, the Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance prohibits gifts, favors or discounts to public officials.

    Since when does Lt. Pickering get a discounted membership at the New Canaan Country Club without paying an initiation fee, because he is public service employee?

    How many tickets for members of his club has he waived over his 25 years?

    Reasonable? Do you think that is appropriate for Lt. Pickering to take care of his friends?

    Reasonable… do you think that Captain K. should be taking business from the Bank of New Canaan on foreclosures?

    Reasonable….do you think that Cheryl Pickering Jones should have been sitting in on the interviews on the internal investigation 3.07 and then meeting with Jim Cole and others cladestinely in non-public meetings conducted by the Police Commission to develop a 3 page Acceptance of Gifts Memorandum of Understanding which conflicts with the Town Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance?

    My hope is that Lt. Pickering’s membership at New Canaan Country Club, which a non-taxable benefit will be used as another nail in the prosecution of the “Dirty Dozen” of the NCPD who were receiving free monitoring services which they were never required to pay for.

    Why don’t you drive by Fred’s house and see if he has a New Canaan Alarm Company sticker on his house windows? Or see whether Cheryl Pickering Jones ever considered it a conflict of interest that she was engaged in negotiating the police contract for years with a brother who benefitted from all of the overtime which was handed out through the tree warden and CL&P, with sometimes three officers making $67.00 an hour for eight hour shifts, sipping coffess and laughing all the way to the bank with our taxpayerm money.

  21. Chris Connors says:

    I am a resident of New Canaan, a friend of the Pickering’s and a member at CCNC. The Club offers special memberships to i) full-time ordained members of the Clergy of any Church domiciled in New Canaan ii) the currently serving superintendent of NC public schools, Headmaster of St-Lukes, and headmaster of NC Country Schook iii) Any currently serving certified and full time member of the teaching faculty of the public or private schools in NC iv) Any currently serving, full time, paid policeman or fireman on the town of NC on active duty…They are special annual members and there is a criteria in place for them to join…How does the fact that Fred and his family are special members of the country club have anything to do with this story? CCNC, the Winter Club, and I’m sure the other clubs in town have the exact same “special memberships” in place in their by-laws for the exact same residents. Again, why is this an issue? It isn’t a tax free benefit as he is paying for a limited membership with limited abilities with post tax income, just like all of our other special members. The police force clearly has a process in place for when an officer is involved in a criminal complaint, and they are going through that process currently which is why no names or details of the case have been released. Why doesn’t everyone wait for the details to come out and find out where the complaint is really coming from. I am a friend and don’t have any details at all, but I have also known Fred for a long time and the character assassination going on in this blog is offensive. When the real story comes out there will be a lot of people in town that will owe he and his family an apology.

    • Well said

    • eye witness news says:

      Chris–

      The reason that the NCCC and NC Winter Club memberships is an issue is that accepting favors, gifts or discounts by any public official, whether appointed or elected, is unlawful by the Town Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance.

      I have asked inspect the public records of the NCPD regarding the waiving of traffic stops on behalf of NCCC members and NCWC members.

      The Town of New Canaan receives revenues from the judiciary in the State for issuing certain tickets.

      If certain members of the community are immune from getting tickets or receive “verbal warnings”–which is the case on 40 percent of the cell phone stops, the other residents do not receive the same benefits as non members.

      This kind of quid quo pro is unlawful as is the ‘special memberships’ the NCCC and NCWC have been providing.

      We will be watching carefully the reassessment decision on the property taxes of NCCC that you have applied for to decrease your tax obligations by granting memberships to public officials/employees in the Town of New Canaan for which you could get a “fair market rate” for such memberships and taxes if you charged initiation fees for these “special category memberships” which are a clear and unambiguous abridgment of the Town Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance.

      Chris Connors isn’t in the phone book BTW. Is that your real name?

      • Laughable says:

        Hey Eye, bark up another tree. These memberships are exactly that, memberships. They pay for them, not gifted. They are not inclusive of all access, usage or rights of full membership, so therefore it is not discounted either. They are not favors as it is open to any of the above mentioned service providers. There are no handouts or favorites from either side. The 2 clubs mentioned are the only ones in town that offer what they do. These memberships allow those sacrificing their time and effort to look after and or help us to have the opportunity to enjoy themselves close to home.

        • eye witness news says:

          Laughable–

          You are obviously a member of the “hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil” Country Club of New Canaan.

          Have you ever read the Code of Ethics and conflicts of interest ordinance? Do you know an ordinance is a municipal law?

          A law isn’t subject to self determination by a “law enforcement” agency which reports to a First Selectman. The Town Charter requires the First Selectman to enforce the ordinanes as stated in Section C3-1.

          Do all NC employees receive the same access to the “benefits” to “reduced cost memberships”? No the NCCC and NCWC determined that if they provide access to NCPD, and teachers, and superintendants, more favors will be bestowed upon their membership when they get stopped on a DUI, or one of their children are found to be texting and driving.

          What happens is in fact “laughable” when a “quid pro quo” by the NCPD occurs when “verbal warnings” (chronicled in the annual report of the NCPD), denying the rest of those who aren members of the “see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil” Country Club of New Canaan.

          What is “laughable” is that now the non-public policy is exposed. I plan on handing out hundreds of copies of the three page Acceptance of Gifts and Memorandum of Understanding at the public meeting tonight at the nature center, as then we will see “how laughable” these matters are to the unknowing citizens of New Canaan who believe our public officials and employees would never accept items of favors, gifts and discounts because these public officials are nothing more than modern day carpetbaggers disguised as “influence peddlers” in the Town of New Canaan.

  22. TheRealReality says:

    I think many of you have lost sight of the important issues at hand; the behavior of Lt. Pickering and the NCPD staff on the night the incident occurred. After talking to several witnesses present the night the incident occurred that I know personally, and being told the same story by each and every one of them, I will share with everyone. On his way out of tequila, Fred Pickering put his hand around the back of the complaintants neck. The complaintant asked Pickering why he was touching him, and repeatedly asked him not to touch him. When Pickering did not listen, the complaintant stood up and was then thrown by the neck into a table. During the altercation, racial slurs were thrown at the complaintant. All of the individuals involved were asked to leave the bar. When the complaintant went to the police station to file the complaint immediately after, the officers behind the desk were Ferraro, Pollock, and shift supervisor Ferris. If anyone wants to know why the police didn’t investigate on the night of the incident, those are the officers to ask. The fact that the Chief of police refused to reveal Pickering’s name is a whole separate issue that should be addressed, but please, let’s not lose sight of who the real victim was in this case.

    • Loose site of who the real victim is? And who is that? The “upstanding” member of our community who filed the complaint? What if you were to learn he has been arrested multiple times by NCPD… and was calling Lt. Pickering a “pig” the night in question. I ask you then..who is the real victim?

    • Truth seeker says:

      Great Question – who is the victim here? Your account is interesting, but leaves out a lot of important info. I’d be curious to know the answers to:

      How this incident (certainly can’t call it a fight) started? I am under the impression that the complainant was belligerent towards multiple people, and freely throwing out insults. Not a crime, but maybe a factor or some insight on his/ her character.

      Is it possible that Lt Pickering, after trying to leave, tried to de-escalate the situation between both parties?. My understanding is that the verbal dispute was not between Pickering and this unnamed person. From what I hear, the argument was really between another patron and this other person. I heard that Pickering tried to break up the dispute, and that’s all. This behavior would be what we should want from all people – off duty police officers included.

      Did Lt Pickering use any racial insults? From what I have been able to gather, there were impolite words from the group – but nothing specific from LT Pickering. I have also heard from many witnesses that there was no racial insults at all.

      Who is the complainant? Good person? Has he or she had previous run ins with the police? LT Pickering? I ask because while there are many who are extremely positive about LT Pickering’s character and reputation (see supporters above, New Canaan Advertiser, and other media outlets), but I have yet to hear anything about the complainant. Do you think that this person may of had an axe to grind? Who can vouch for him/her?

      All of this will come out…

      So, great question – Who IS the victim. From the many eyewitnesses that I have spoken with, and personally know, and who are consistent – the VICTIM IS PICKERING.

      What is interesting is that on this thread, there seems to be only one eye witness to the entire thing, and that is Kevin (Please see above). This does not seem to be anything at all here, NO FIGHT, NO BRAWL and the Pickering acted 100% appropriately.

      I agree with you that we need to separate this Board’s bias (just or not, I don’t know) against the PD and this incident. It is all to easy to pick on law enforcement, and paint them with a negative brush.

  23. While all of this is going on, and since the U.S. attorney is involved, it is in the best interest of the public i.e. the town, that Capitan Leon and the Police chief be allowed to either retire or relieved of their duties until a full investigation is completed on their actives and see if criminal charges are filed against them then they can offer a defense on their actions. For their “families” sake I hope it does not happen.

    The Police chief is getting push back on his budgets, Chief do you get the message, put in your papers, so your family has someone to live on while you might be provided free housing for being a part of Capitan Leon’s misconduct of having two jobs, etc, etc, etc, (being paid by the town while he is practicing law.) As a legal professional Capitan Leon you know that by accepting a pay check from the town of New Canaan and billable legal work on town time, you are committing fraud (maybe it is covered under the following Federal acts. (18 USC CHAPTER 63 – MAIL FRAUD 18 USC § 1343 – FRAUD BY WIRE)

    The resdience of New Canaan are all busy, and don’t really pay much attention to what is going on with the police and the First Selectman, but once this makes all of the National newspapers, like the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN TV etc, there will be a public outrage never before seen, and the residences will want all of those involved with their heads on the chopping block.

    Things were nice here before the likes of Leon came to town, he has changed the way things are done, and the respect the Police once showed the residence, and the respect the residence showed the Police.
    I have read enough from others expressing their thoughts, and if anyone wants to belong to the CCNC so it be. Let’s not lose sight, they still have to pay for the monthly dues, and if they don’t they get posted. This is not a cheap membership regardless of who you are.

    As a side note, there is also several other things going on with Capitan Leon, (cover up) and if the media would FOIA his time sheets and his record of expenses, (last 3-5 years) a first year finance associate will see what he is doing. Look and ask the hard questions on any and “all” of his expenses, parking receipts, mileage, and explanations of his car miles the town pays for etc, etc…

    Since the Chief likes to refuse FOIA requests, I conclude there must be a reason, the media needs to look at all of the FOIA requests from the last three –five years and see what ones were refused or not complied with. Questions need to be asked on all of them, and not just accept the first answer given. A copy of all e-mails between Leon, and the Chief on town residents, policies and procedures , e-mails between the Chief and the Police Commioner Cole and between Leon and PC Cole.

    People will come out of the wood work once these things start to come out. There are town residence who are afraid of the police, because the Chief and Leon are acting like thugs. They are civil servants and work for the town and are fully accountable to the residence.

    This should be included in all FOIA requests: (found on Google search for Federal FOIA requests)
    The term “document” shall mean any kind of written, recorded, digitized or graphic matter, or matter fixed in a tangible medium of expression, however produced or reproduced, of any kind or description, whether sent or received by the Responding Party or neither, including originals, copies or drafts and both sides thereof, and including but not limited to: papers, books, letters, correspondence, telegrams, cables, facsimile transmissions, telex messages, emails, memoranda, notes, notations, work papers, inter-office or internal memoranda, transcripts, minutes, reports and recordings of telephone, computer or other conversations, or of interviews, or of conferences, or other meetings, affidavits, subpoenas, notices, statements, summaries, opinions, reports, studies, analyses, evaluations, spreadsheets, data compilations, databases, contracts, agreements, journals, statistical records, desk calendars, appointment books, diaries, lists, tabulations, video recordings, sound recordings, computer print-outs, computer software and diskettes, data processing input and output, microfilms, and other records kept by electronic, digital, computerized photographic, or any other electronic, computerized digital or mechanical means, minutes of meetings of board of directors, executive committees, or any other writings or recordings similar to any of the foregoing, however denominated by the Responding Party or its present or former partners, attorneys, counsel, accountants, auditors, agents, employees and all persons acting or previously acting on its behalf. The term “document” includes all of the above materials, whether asserted privileged or not.

  24. Terri, please post this on your web site?

    http://www.change.org/petitions#all

    I started a petition to get the Chief and Capitan Leon off the NCPD.

    Thank you.

    PS I like your style……………..

    • Leon is a no nonsense, straight forth guy. He is not about to jeopardize all the years he has served our community and break laws of holding two jobs. He is by the books and I am confident his law practices are on his own time. And the Chief is a good man. I am in favor of starting a petition to get you thrown out of town. That is, if you are even a resident. It seems most of the folks commenting here, want nothing more then to bash our PD. Dorothy, I only ask you to click your heals….and go back to wherever you came from!

      • Sean NC Res,
        With all due respect Sean, Leon is and has been an embarrassment to the NCPD, and to the town. Explain why the other Police offers through a senior member of the NCPD went to the first Selectman and said there would be a “no confidence” vote if Leon is made Chief.
        Leon is in fact is practicing law (estimated to be 2,000 billable hours = a 40 hour work week schedule based on his case load listed under his jurist number, and that does not include office time to meet clients, and draft complaints. I have drafted complaints, and there is no way it takes five minutes, but more like 2-3 hours for simple things) on town time, and if you looked at his jurist number, and see all of his cases (and documents he has filed do the math) in the Ct court system (the court is not open on weekends and don’t have evening hours).
        “No nonsense”, with that statement, you are not up to speed on what is really going on in New Canaan, he has already jeopardize all the years he has “served” you really mean self serving, and yes he is breaking laws by holding two jobs, and using town assets to conduct his law practice by using the Police car that was assigned to him for his legal practice. Please tell all of us when he was granted permission by the Police commission to allow him to practice law?
        He is by the books, if so, can you than explain why he took a free alarm service from the NC alarm company? (Cost of approx $3,500.00) If you are confident his law practice is on his own time, then a Federal Investigation by the U.S. attorney office can confirm just what he is really doing.
        You’re correct I don’t live in New Canaan, so there is no need to worry about any petitions to get me out of town. Do you know anything about Constitutional Law? i.e. any of the amendments? i.e. First Amendment and Free Speech?
        FYI, I’d read up on them. I really enjoyed that class in law school. Prof Laurence H. Tribe was the prof, and in his lecture class he made you really think about things and his style of teaching was to make you think about things in a three dimensional way.
        There is a reason why most of the people are bashing “some/few” and not all of the NCPD staff. There are a few bad apples. Management/leadership sets the pace for the others to follow, and it is not a good example.
        I would like nothing more (not possible) than to be allowed to prosecute those staff members who broke the law in U.S. Federal court in Bridgeport, (under the RICO statute, so all of their assets will be seized once they are found guilty) and then I will click my heels as you have suggested and go back to Kansas to visit my faithful dog Toto. Since it is not possible, I’d be open to be second chair on a pro bono basis.
        Once upon a time, a clergy member said “The truth will free you”, amen.

        Sean, check your facts first before you write things without merit.

        • Sean -NC Res says:

          Dorothy,
          I think you might be confused. In your rush to attack, you appear to have misguided your anger. Although I am a resident of New Canaan, that does not mean every NC Res. speaks for me. Should you find a moment of clarity during your tempestuous rage, you will see that I neither authored the thread which you find so appalling, nor have I written anything which remotely obfuscates the facts or merit of the Lt. Pickering story or any other tangent you have chosen to rant about.

          Ironic that you call to attention the First Amendment and freedom of speech, after chastising the actual author for exercising his/her rights here. The Bill of Rights guarantees personal freedoms for all – not just those whose beliefs align with your own.

          Sean – NC Res. (not NC Res.)

  25. eye witness news says:

    NC Resident:

    If you took the time to gather information available to you about Lt. Pickering, go to the jud.ct.gov website. Click on the left toolbar on cases.

    Then another dropdown menu will appear. Click on Search by Attorney.

    Put in juris number 422116.

    Then you will see, Mr. Wizard of “NC Res” nine new cases Capt. K. is working on. Click on the case files and you will see how many hearings he has been required to make an appearance on including cases involving foreclosures involving even the Bank of New Canaan.

    Dorothy doesn’t need new shoes. She should click them three times and perhaps she might find a place where corruption isn’t attempted to ever be buried in God’s Acre.

  26. disgusted resident says:

    Clearly there are quite a few unemployed, overly zeleous people with little to do other than complain over whatever matter they can. whilst I agree the information should be released, no different than when anyone else is accused of a wrongful act, everyone should hold on to their panties and wait for the findings from the investigation. and if you’re sincerely that anxious to get to the bottom of it yourself, grab a group of your friends and camp out at the front door of the police department in protest, or at least rally everyone you know to call the state’s attorney’s office and request an independent, unbiased investigation. and if you’re group isn’t large enough to be all that effective, then consider looking in the mirror and asking yourself if a few xanax might do the trick.

  27. FTR..as a “young person” in the community..you guys and girls are nuts.

    Do you know why he should get a discount on the club membership? Because he has to deal with spoiled brats like y’all.

    I bet being a police officer is awful…especially when you have so many ungrateful people commenting here.

    We’re talking about pennies out of your pocket in taxes…pennies you let fall out of your hand when you stop at starbucks..you watch it fall to the ground but don’t pick it up. But here you are adamantly fighting over it.

    I don’t know the guy..and quite frankly, don’t care. He provides public service and protection for our children…and children’s children. You ungrateful bunch of people. If he did in fact do something wrong, he will be recognized for that…but the vile nature of “Old New Canaan” is really showing through.

    Kudos to the unmovable Dinosaurs!

  28. I have known the Pickerings for eight years and they are one of the most outstanding, hard-working, honest families that I know. For the past twenty-six years Lt. Pickering has put his life at risk to protect the residents of NC. TB, Dorothy and the other despicable people, can say you have done that? No, you cannot!

  29. Is anyone on the “Police Commission” (PC) Mr. Cole, the First Selectman, are you all paying attention to what is being written? Is this another Watergate?

    This is the time to show your true colors, and what your real job “responsibilities” are to the local tax payers, “lead by example”, “take charge”, be ‘in command” “take ownership” of the problem you are faced with. Get out in front of this before it gets worst for the whole town. Your lack of leadership, only hurts the town residents.

    It is your “legal obligation” (PC) to act on the information that is supported (not speculation) in the court records and files, and ask the U.S. Attorney to investigate Capt Leon, and the Chief. (If the town does and I am sure it does has taken Federal funds) Than the only choice (PC) is the U.S. attorney’s office.

    If the Chief does not know what Leon is really doing then now is the time for the Chief to throw Leon under the bus. If the Chief does know, then it is time for him to step down or retire. It is only a matter of time before this all becomes National news in print and on TV. It might be in a story before the week is out on ABC, or in the New York Times. (NBC news people live in NC.)

    New Canaan is a truly nice place to live if you can afford it, my Aunt, and Uncle love the people and think they are wonderful. Midwest values won’t allow this to happen in my little town of Maria Stein, Ohio.

    God Bless,

  30. William from the UK says:

    Teri I follow you from the UK on RT’s Keiser Report. These people in your town are lucky they don’t have UK papers reporting on cop problems then they’d really be in for a shock. It’s funny how they think the police officer who polices the public shouldn’t have his life examined while he’s being investigated by your courts.
    When we see you on Max’s show next?
    What happen to the swinger story you were working on in that little town of yours?

    • Teri Buhl says:

      William the swinger story got tied up in litigation. Dirty legal tricks by the subject of the story but we go to court for a summary judgment hearing on Monday to ask the judge to throw it out. CNBC has already been tossed as a defendant. After that you should have the story and it will be worth the wait.

      And yes there is not a strong press in Fairfield County – none of the local wall st suburb towns are use to reporters actually investigating anything or writing about their lives, or having their government challenged for lack of transparency.

  31. Everyone see the latest NC Advertiser alert? Now what? Does this shift momentum towards favoring Officer Pickering? Are all the “Blowhards” going to continue their character assassination? I don’t know about all of the other stuff mentioned here but I do know that my experiences with Officer Pickering have never been negative. He is a man with a job to do and hopefully his job entails keeping my town and my family safe. Good Luck to him and I will wait to see what the end result is before judging Officer Pickering.

  32. Truth Seeker says:

    Wow – Seems like a real winner here! Do you really think that this person can be credible??? A true upstanding member of our town, clearly out to get the police becaus they won’t let him rob others with a weapon. Great.

    Hey Teri – is this his only arrest? What else could this wonderful member of our town have done?

    Hey Nowacki: You are good at addresses, where does this guy live?

    His Mom must be so proud.

    • Fred's #2 Fan says:

      Yes, this person can and is credible. Yes, he was arrested, but the charges did not stick because they were made up by Pickering and the NCPD. Maybe Pickering was getting back at him because he got off on the trumped up charges. He has no conviction record. We live in a country that you are innocent until proven guilty. No this man was not proven guilty, the police didn’t have a case, so he is innocent in the eyes of the law which Officer Pickering is sworn to uphold. So, now we should believe Officer Pickering is rational and upstanding? Why did they arrest this kid? Because he was African American or because he was under 25 years old ? Either could be the case when it comes to Officer Pickering.

  33. Fact Checker says:

    Truth Seeker, I urge you to check your facts before you resort to name calling. Just because the New Canaan Advertiser published an article as a last minute attempt to save face on the behalf of Pickering, by dragging the complaintant through the dirt, doesn’t mean his account of the story isn’t the reality. If you had any knowledge of the victim’s case from a couple years back, you would know that while he was in fact arrested, he was never convicted of these charges in court, because they were bogus! Regardless, none of this changes what happened the night of the incident in question. Whether Pickering has had past experience with this individual or not, it is by no means acceptable to lay your hands on anyone! A police officer, of all people, should know that. Because the complaintant chose not to speak with reporters from the Advertiser, the article is completely one-sided. Pickering also has some pretty close ties with certain individuals at the Advertiser, hmm…I wonder if that’s why this article was published today?? The carelessness to find truth, gullibility, and flat-out stupidity among some New Canaan residents is a true embarrassment.

  34. the real motive says:

    sounds like someone from the police department is trying to redirect the attention from pickering to the chief and captain. and clearly they know them fairly well since they’re addressing them by their first name. nonetheless, regarding the incident that took place, I have a couple questions and am really curious about how they will be answered;

    1) why is an off-duty police officer going out in the town in which he serves and protects, to a bar nonetheless? isn’t this asking for trouble? Think about it…the police officer who patrols the streets, breaks up bar fights and arrests people for DUI. and what happens when that same police officer needs to enforce the law at that bar while he’s on duty. can he still truly be unbias toward an establishment or its employees when he’s a patron of that same establishment? how’s that go…don’t s**t where you eat?

    2) if the situation esculated into a fight because of someone saying derogatory comments, wouldn’t it have been most appropriate for the bartender to expel the individual before it actually esculated into something more serious?

    3) if the off-duty officer was really “breaking up” a fight, why didn’t he call the department to either request on-duty officers to be dispatched or at the very least report the incident?

    4) why is it that the shift commander from that night’s shift not send patrol to investigate the report immediately following their knowledge of the incident, especially since eye witnesses would still be there?

    5) why wouldn’t the shift commander from that night’s shift contact his superiors immediately following receipt of the complaint filed against the off-duty officer?

    put everything else aside and give thought to those questions. what’s really happening here. and is this the chief’s and captain’s corrupt way of trying to bury something? sounds more like they’re the ones being dragged through the mud by someone who has more of a vendetta against them.

  35. eye witness news says:

    Truth seeker:

    For $2.99 you can go to a website called intellius.

    You can find anyone, including the addresses of dorothy in oz.

    Sounds like NCPD had a red alert for Toto today near the lakeview cemetary. Perhaps you can bury this thread here…along with the papal votes today.

  36. lady in red says:

    I must say that after reading all of this it amazes me how much people are quick to assume things. Since I am close to one of the complaintants involved (and yes there are more than one), All I can say is that there are a few things people fail to realize in this situation.
    #1 — the police dept took 2 weeks to even put a statement out there regarding the incident. that is partly due to the fact that they didn’t want a riot on their hands from a certain organization that called the chief to complain about the fact that they hadn’t even mentioned it for 2 weeks.

    #2 — Even though pickering was named and people have their own opinion of him.. maybe they should know about previous complaints about him and him harrassing one of the complaintants before and the serious nature of that harrassment which the NCPD won’t talk about… oh why? cuz it would make them look bad

    #3 — pickering wasn’t even put on administrative leave until after the phone call from this particular organization .. so tell me how you do a criminal investigation and you still have someone working? Fishy to me

    #4 — so the NC Advertiser gets the name of the other person involved and pulls out the history of that person to try and make them look bad but why don’t they tell the end of the story regarding that person… he was NEVER convicted.. charges thrown out.. and guess who was the officer behind that arrest…. Yes pickering… but amazingly enough it took the NCPD 5 weeks to arrest that person because they had no damn evidence so they had to come up with something.

    Pickering has to realize that he is not above the law. For those who support him of course they have never seen his bad side… why would he show that to you? For those of us who have seen in up close and personal …. maybe you should ask us the questions that no one asks… .especially the newspaper… It’s amazing how the NC Patch and the Advertiser only print what is convenient for them. Soon it will all come to light… the good, the bad and the ugly.

  37. officer pickering is a devoted professional, he conducted himself in a very professional way at my new canaan home when I had a death in my family, let the facts of this situation be exposed in full please, before making negative comments, knowing the true facts of what happened, sometimes a professional must make a split decision as to what the next move should be, that can happen in a matter of seconds, I believe that a proper professional decision was madein this very quick situation that has been blowned way out of prortion, once again I would like to see the negative comments stop

    • Teri Buhl says:

      No citizen should ever be afraid to comment negatively or positively about a public official. All forms of free speech are welcome here.
      If we could trust a NCPD internal investigation I don’t think the State’s attorney would be involved. There is no need to wait to see what the NCPD comes back with to report news and views on the event. They should and are being reported as journalist learn what they can. The NCPD has a history of not being transparent on what happen in internal investigations which are matter of public concern. Any citizen could FOI a request to see them.

  38. eye witness news says:

    Listen up sports fans:

    In my amended federal complaint 3:12cv1296 (JCH) the active charges for prosecution at a jury trial for damages includes the following as count one:

    In the manner described above, defendant Pickering deprived the plaintiff of his right to be free from warrantless and unreasonable searches and seizures, a right secured to the plaintiff by the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution as enforced through Sections 1983 and 1988 of Title 42 of the United States Code.

    So, does Fred Pickering deserved to be inducted into the public officials hall of fame as “a fine and upstanding citizen”

    On February 27, 2013, a federal judge in New Haven dismissed certain allegations of violations of the civil and constitutional rights in an amended 21 page complaint filed on December 1, 2012.

    However, the federal judge, the Honorable Janet C. Hall did not dismiss the allegations against the Town of New Canaan and the NCPD officers for “malicious prosecution” and other charges for my allegedly unlawful arrest on February 24, 2010…charges I defended myself successfully for in Norwalk Superior Court in January 2013. So there is substantiality in the view of the federal court judge in New Haven that the allegations set forth in my amended federal complaint, which were not dismissed, including Count One, involving Lt. Pickering, remain alive for further discovery, a selection for jury and a date for a trial expected to be set before the end of the year.

  39. Kalee MvViel says:

    There are other Racial Profiling Complaints (1) in particular that stems off a bogus stop sign ticket on south ave 8/15/09. There is no stop on South Ave going on to the Merritt parkway. The Complaint was filed in April 2010 and it still being surpressed!

  40. Kalee McViel says:

    There is a clear pattern of Public Prejudice. It is conducted with calculated confusion! The system that is mandated to protect and provide justice for all is the very system that commits the most heinous injustices!

  41. Good day my mate! I learned about your work from The Keiser Report. I would like to express that this article rocks !

  42. Wonderful. Thanks for taking the time to report this

  43. I was happy to hear the Chief is out, the newspapers are playing him up as a good guy. The NCPD union held a vote, and voted “No” Confidence on the chief. People working at the town dump know. The problem is going to still continue until Leon is gone, but I have a strange feeling the Chief and Leon could be in some serious legal troubles with the State Police. The NCPD officers feel free to contact the FBI, they will protect you, and Leon or Cole can’t do anything to you as a federal CI.

    Leon, I have seen you laughing, your legal work is not approved, and Cole will throw you under the bus. It is time Cole also leaves, the problems stems from Cole. He spends more time at NCPD than the officers do. The town residents are really tired of this nonsense.

    I find it a big joke, Cole is spending so much time in close door meetings trying to figure out the next step. The next step is find a Search firm, get the town to agree to a decent salary, and give the new chief a housing allowance, I am sure one of the local Banks will step up and help in giving the new Chief a great rate he can afford. (residents of this town will do what ever it takes to get a good Chief in place, i.e. start a housing fund for the new chief. $20.00 from every resident goes along way.)

    After the new chief is hired from the i.e. a retired FBI agent, retired U.S. Marshal or a retired NYC high ranking officer, the process is done. Cole and then you need to leave the minute it is done, actually I find your involvement very distasteful, and you will poison the process.

    Cole, you didn’t see this one coming, Vote of no Confidence, and by the way, you are not a favorite of the NCPD. This happened under your watch…………. RESIGN……………..

  44. That was an awesome post… Thumbs up..

  45. Madeleine says:

    Having read this I thought it was extremely enlightening.
    I appreciate you finding the time and energy to put this article together.

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