Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Connecticut's Constitutional Crisis?

It may not be authorized for Sheriffs who had arrest powers in the Executive Branch to be transferred over to the Judicial Branch in Connecticut AND have arrest powers.

Those identified as having committed criminal acts as Sheriffs, might be promoted in the Judicial Marshals. There is allegedly defrauding of taxpayers, in that some Sheriffs did not complete 20 years hazardous duty, and got retirement, and some may be "double dipping" getting paid more than 120 days per diem after retirement.

There needs to be an honest investigation.

[click here], is Connecticut Supreme Court Justice Chase T. Rogers part of the continuing cover-up?

What lies below is from an official pdf, cut and pasted:

INTERIM REPORT OF THE
ATTORNEY GENERAL
AND THE
AUDITORS OF PUBLIC ACCOUNTS
INVESTIGATION CONCERNING SHERIFFS
OCTOBER 11, 2000
ROBERT G. JAEKLE
AUDITOR OF PUBLIC ACCOUNTS
KEVIN P. JOHNSTON
AUDITOR OF PUBLIC ACCOUNTS
RICHARD BLUMENTHAL
ATTORNEY GENERAL
B. ASSOCIATE DEPUTY SHERIFFS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
5. New London County. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
4. New Haven County. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
3. Middlesex County. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
2. Litchfield County. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
1. Fairfield County. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
A. HONORARY DEPUTY SHERIFFS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
II. SHERIFF BADGES AND IDENTIFICATION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
I. SUMMARY & REFERRAL TO CHIEF STATE’S ATTORNEY. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
H. CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
G. REVISIONS IN CONNECTICUT FIREARMS LAWS SHOULD BE CONSIDERED. . . . . . . . 20
20
F. THE NEW LONDON COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT DOES NOT MAINTAIN
ADEQUATE INVENTORY RECORDS CONCERNING CONTROLLED ITEMS SUCH
AS FIREARMS AND WEAPON MAGAZINES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
19
E. THE NEW LONDON COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT IS SHOWN AS THE
DEALER OR SELLER FOR NUMEROUS FIREARMS TRANSFERS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
19
D. FIREARMS AND WEAPON MAGAZINES WERE SHIPPED TO THE NEW LONDON
COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT AT THE JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURTHOUSE IN
NEW LONDON. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3. Conclusion. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
17
2. Firearm and Weapon Magazine Purchases Authorized By The
New London County Sheriff Department for Individuals Who
Were Not Sheriffs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
15
1. Many Purchases Were Made In Which Sheriff Status Was
Reflected On The Documentation Associated With the Purchase. . . . . . . .
C. USE OF PEACE OFFICER STATUS TO MAKE PURCHASES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
12
B. AUTHORIZATIONS TO MAKE PERSONAL PURCHASES IN NEW LONDON
COUNTY. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2. State Law. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
1. Federal Law. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
A. LEGAL BACKGROUND. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
10
I. PERSONAL PURCHASES BY DEPUTY SHERIFFS OR SPECIAL
DEPUTY SHERIFFS OF FIREARMS OR HIGH-CAPACITY
WEAPON MAGAZINES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
REPORT. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
INTRODUCTION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
i
5. New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
(3) Conclusion & Recommendation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
53
(2) Funds of the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc.
Are In Fact Used for Charitable Purposes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(1) Organizational History. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
4. Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
51
3. Hartford County Sheriff’s Department Community Charities
Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(4) Referral to Department of Revenue Services. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
51
(e) Although it is Organized as a Charity, the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. has Devoted Only a Tiny Portion
of its Funds For Charity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
50
(d) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Has
Provided Other Tangible Benefits to Specific Individuals. . . . . . . . . . . .
49
(c) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Has Used
Its Financial Resources for Political Activity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
48
(b) Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Payments for
Lobbying. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
47
(a) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Subsidizes
Some Expenses of the Sheriff, Chief Deputy Sheriff, and
Certain of its Officers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
47
(3) Expenses of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(2) Revenue of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. . . . . . . . 46
(1) Organizational History. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
2. Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
1. Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45
B. ANALYSIS OF PARTICULAR SHERIFF ASSOCIATIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45
A. SUMMARY OF APPLICABLE RULES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
43
III. MISUSE OF TAX-EXEMPT STATUS BY SHERIFF
ASSOCIATIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
D. SUMMARY & REFERRAL TO CHIEF STATE’S ATTORNEY. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41
3. Special Deputy Sheriff Badges Are Not Adequately Controlled. . . . . . . . . . 40
40
2. A Civil Service Secretary in the New Haven County Sheriff’s
Office Was Given a Special Deputy Sheriff Badge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
39
1. A Civil Service Secretary in the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office
Was Issued a Special Deputy Sheriff Badge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
C. OTHER BADGE ACCOUNTABILITY ISSUES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
ii
1. Illegal Contribution to Valentino for High Sheriff Campaign. . . . . . . . . . . . 64
A. ILLEGAL CONTRIBUTIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64
V. CAMPAIGN FINANCE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63
E. CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63
D. REFERRAL TO DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE SERVICES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63
C. GOVERNMENT TAX EXEMPT STATUS WAS USED FOR PERSONAL PURCHASES. . . . . 62
62
B. THE TAX AUTHORIZATION NUMBER USED IN NEW LONDON COUNTY DOES
NOT EXIST. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
61
A. AUTHORIZATIONS TO USE TAX EXEMPTION NUMBER IN NEW LONDON
COUNTY. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
61
IV. PERSONAL PURCHASES BY DEPUTY SHERIFFS OR SPECIAL
DEPUTY SHERIFFS WITHOUT PAYING SALES TAX. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
C. REFERRAL TO DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE SERVICES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61
(3) Summary & Recommendation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61
61
(2) The Windam County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. Has Had
Minimal Activity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(1) Organizational History. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60
7. Windham County Sheriffs Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60
(3) Summary & Recommendation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
(2) Utilization of Funds. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
(1) Organizational History. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
6. Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
(4) Summary & Referral to Department of Revenue Services. . . . . . . . 58
57
(d) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Makes
Payments for Lobbying. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
57
(c) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
Subsidizes Convention Expenses for Specific Individuals. . . . . . . . . . . .
56
(b) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Has Paid
Legal Bills for Deputy Sheriffs Charged With Crimes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
55
(a) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
Subsidizes Some Expenses of the Sheriff, Chief Deputy
Sheriff, and Certain of its Members. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
55
(3) Expenses of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
55
(2) Revenue of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(1) Organizational History. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
iii
79
A. SOME CHECKS DRAWN ON THE TRUSTEE ACCOUNT USED BY FAIRFIELD
COUNTY SHERIFF CHARLES M. VALENTINO HAVE BEEN RETURNED FOR
INSUFFICIENT FUNDS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
IX. ADMINISTRATION OF THIRD PARTY FUNDS BY SHERIFFS. . . . . . 78
VIII. DEADBEAT DADS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78
B. CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77
76
3. Deception By Valentino In Explaining What Was Done At
Fairfield University. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2. Fairfield University Concert. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76
1. Fairfield University Commencement. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74
74
A. FAIRFIELD COUNTY DEPUTY SHERIFFS AND SPECIAL DEPUTY SHERIFFS
HAVE BEEN USED TO PROVIDE SECURITY AT FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY
EVENTS IN EXCHANGE FOR FINANCIAL BENEFIT TO THE FAIRFIELD COUNTY
SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION, INC. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
73
VII. USE OF DEPUTY SHERIFFS AND SPECIAL DEPUTY
SHERIFFS FOR EXTRA DUTY SECURITY WORK. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
F. REFERRAL TO ETHICS COMMISSION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73
E. OTHER COUNTIES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73
D. NEW HAVEN COUNTY SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION, INC. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72
C. FAIRFIELD COUNTY SHERIFFS ASSOCIATION, INC. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71
B. CONNECTICUT STATE SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69
A. LEGAL BACKGROUND. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68
VI. CODE OF ETHICS FOR LOBBYISTS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68
D. REFERRAL TO ELECTIONS ENFORCEMENT COMMISSION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67
66
C. SHERIFF SUBORDINATES ARE THE MAJOR CONTRIBUTORS TO SHERIFF
CAMPAIGNS AND POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEES ASSOCIATED WITH
SHERIFFS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
65
B. THE POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE STATUS OF THE FAIRFIELD COUNTY
SHERIFFS POLITICAL ACTION LEAGUE WAS MISUSED. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
65
(2) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
Inappropriately Used Its Own Resources To Establish A
Political Action Committee. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
64
(1) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Made an
Illegal Contribution to the Valentino for High Sheriff
Campaign Committee. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
64
2. Illegal Contributions by Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
iv
CONCLUSION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 89
B. ORGANIZATION OF THE SHERIFF SYSTEM. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86
A. TYPES OF SHERIFFS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84
XI. GENERAL BACKGROUND CONCERNING SHERIFF SYSTEM. . . . . 84
B. CONCLUSION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84
81
A. PER DIEM COMPENSATION AND TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENTS WERE PAID
FROM STATE FUNDS FOR SOME SHERIFFS WHO ATTENDED NATIONAL
SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION CONVENTIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
81
X. SOME SHERIFFS WERE PAID MONEY BY THE STATE FOR
THEIR ATTENDANCE AT NATIONAL SHERIFFS’
ASSOCIATION CONVENTIONS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
B. OTHER SHERIFFS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80
v
INTRODUCTION
This report presents a partial picture — the result of a work in progress that citizens have
a right to know even as our investigation continues. The central theme of our findings so far is the
absence of adequate controls, oversight and accountability in significant areas of sheriff
operations. The report describes some specific areas where failings and flaws have been found.
They include improprieties and possible illegalities relating to honorary badges, gun purchases,
political contributions, sales tax exemptions, lobbying activities, and others. Some practices are
simply unwise or improper. Others are starkly illegal. All demonstrate a lack of sufficient
supervision, standards and oversight that are essential to public accountability.
The report, like our investigation, is ongoing and incomplete — in effect, a continuing
effort. It is incomplete, first, because it does not present all of the evidence and information
covering all of the areas that we have reviewed. We have sought to be fair and factual, not only
avoiding reliance on rumor or suspicion, but even delaying parts of the report that are not fully
developed so as to be as comprehensive and balanced as we think appropriate.
Another reason that this report is only interim relates to resistance by the sheriffs
themselves1 — including some 14 motions to quash lawful and proper subpoenas seeking very
necessary and appropriate information.2 Such resistance from certain sheriffs has prevented our
1
2 These cases have all been consolidated in the Judicial District of Middlesex, with two exceptions noted below.
The names and docket numbers of the cases consolidated in the Judicial District of Middlesex are as follows: (1)
Walter J. Kupchunos, Jr., Sheriff, Hartford County v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket
# CV00-0092590-S; (2) Charles Valentino, Sr., Sheriff, Fairfield County v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney
General, docket # CV00-0092528-S; (3) Michael Piccoli, Sheriff, Tolland County, and Sharon Uhlman, Chief
Deputy Sheriff, Tolland County v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0092577-S; (4) Thomas
W. White, Sheriff, Windham County and Frank A. Zak, Jr., Chief Deputy Sheriff, Windham County v. Richard
Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0092504-S; (5) Erwyn B. Glanz, Deputy Sheriff, Hartford County v.
Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0092760-S; (6) Ronald Kadar, Deputy Sheriff, Fairfield
County v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0092936-S; (7) Hartford County Sheriffs
Department Community Charities Association, Inc. v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket #
CV00-0093035-S; (8) Bruce M. Suchinski, Deputy Sheriff, Hartford County v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney
General, docket # CV00-0093201-S; (9) George F. Hammel, Deputy Sheriff, Fairfield County v. Richard
Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0093202-S; (10) Richard Moccia, Deputy Sheriff, Fairfield County
v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0093248-S. At the time that this Interim Report is issued
legal briefs have been filed by all parties and a hearing is scheduled on the motions to quash for October 13, 2000
at 10:00 a.m. Another case was filed recently in the Judicial District of Middlesex captioned Patricia Randall,
Deputy Sheriff, Fairfield County v. Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General, docket # CV00-0093389-S, which has
not yet been consolidated with the other cases. In addition, there are two cases that were recently filed in other
judicial districts as follows: (1) William Nolan, Deputy Sheriff, New Haven County v. Richard Blumenthal,
Attorney General, Judicial District of New Haven, return date October 31, 2000; (2) Mark Pesiri v. State of
Connecticut, Attorney General, Judicial District of Stamford-Norwalk, docket # CV00-0180549-S; and, (3)
1 Fairfield County: Sheriff Charles Valentino; Deputy Sheriff George Hammel, Deputy Sheriff Ronald Kadar,
Deputy Sheriff Richard Moccia, Deputy Sheriff Mark Pesiri, Deputy Sheriff Patricia Randall; Hartford County:
Sheriff Walter Kupchunos; Deputy Sheriff Erwyn Glanz, Deputy Sheriff Charles Ferrato, Deputy Sheriff Edward
Jurgelas, Deputy Sheriff Bruce Suchinski; New Haven County: Deputy Sheriff William Nolan; Tolland County:
Sheriff Michael Piccoli; Chief Deputy Sheriff Sharon Uhlman; Windham County: Sheriff Thomas White; Chief
Deputy Sheriff Frank Zak.
access to key records, documents, and other material. A more subtle and even pernicious form of
resistance has been suggestions of retaliation against individuals who may be inclined to
cooperate. Sometimes subtle and implicit, these threats are grounds in and of themselves for
further inquiry.
In sum, we plan to do a final report as promptly as possible, providing a full account of the
material we have obtained and the information we have gathered. A truly complete report, of
course, would have some account of the many good people who have performed commendable
service as members of sheriff offices. By its nature and mandate, our report focuses on potential
misconduct rather than good works.
Finally, our offices have taken no position on the ballot question relating to the future of
sheriffs offices, and this report should not be read as taking sides or recommending one outcome
or another. It is intended to be as balanced, objective and impartial as possible, offering lessons
for the future and documenting areas where controls, accountability, and oversight have been
lacking.
In summary, our interim findings are as follows:
A. FIREARMS AND WEAPON MAGAZINES.
w The New London County Sheriff Department improperly authorized Deputy
Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to make personal purchases of firearms and
weapon magazines, including items of a type restricted to law enforcement use.
w New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan has failed to account for all of the
authorizations which may have been provided to make personal purchases of
firearms and weapon magazines.
w Some of the firearms and weapon magazines were personally purchased — for
personal use — by Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs exploiting their
peace officer status.
w The New London County Sheriff Department improperly authorized individuals
who were not sheriffs to purchase firearms and/or weapons magazines.
w Numerous firearms were shipped to the Judicial District Courthouse at New
London, although they do not appear in sheriff property inventories.
w Documents associated with many firearms transactions show the seller to be the
New London County Sheriff Department. These weapons never appeared in
sheriff property inventories.
2
Edward Jurgelas, Deputy Sheriff v. State of Connecticut, Attorney General, Judicial District of Hartford, docket
# CV00-0802232. The latter three cases have not yet been transferred and consolidated with the cases in
Middletown.
There is no legal or policy justification for the practice of authorizing subordinates of a
Sheriff to make personal purchases of firearms and weapons magazines of any type, let alone
firearms or weapons magazines restricted for law enforcement use, particularly when the official
duties of many of those purchasing weapons do not call for being armed. Even more egregious
are those instances where private individuals, who were not Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy
Sheriffs, were authorized to purchase weapons and high capacity magazines for use “in the
performance of official duties”. These misrepresentations were knowing and material.
Such practices reveal a scheme which led vendors to believe that these firearms and
weapons magazines would be used for law enforcement purposes even though they were to be
personally owned and personally used by the individuals making the purchases. Sheriffs should not
authorize anyone to make personal purchases of firearms or weapon magazines. Anyone
permitted by law to make such personal purchases should do it on his own.
All purchases that were actually made with such authorizations should be immediately
researched and identified and all firearms and weapons magazines restricted for law enforcement
use should be recovered.
Accordingly, we have referred the above concerns to the Chief State’s Attorney to
determine whether or not any action under Connecticut’s criminal laws is warranted.
B. SHERIFF BADGES & IDENTIFICATION.
w In several counties, Sheriffs and sheriff associations were involved in improperly
issuing badges and/or identification cards to “Honorary Deputy Sheriffs” or
other unauthorized individuals.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino appointed people as “Honorary
Deputy Sheriffs” in exchange for paying $150 to the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Fairfield County received a sheriff
badge, an identification card in the same form as that used for Deputy Sheriffs,
and a commission authorizing them to exercise the office of Deputy Sheriff.
w In Litchfield County, individuals joining the sheriff association received a sheriff
badge upon paying initial membership dues of $75 to the Litchfield County
Sheriff Association. For a short period of time Litchfield County Sheriff Richard
Zaharek also appointed a handful of individuals associated with the Torrington
Fish & Game Association, Inc. to the nonexistent position of “Associate Deputy
Sheriff.”
w In Middlesex County, individuals who joined the Middlesex County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. received badges.
w In New Haven County, individuals joining the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. commonly received badges. From our investigation there appear
3
to be at least 629 individuals who joined this association as “Honorary Deputy
Sheriffs”.
w In New London County, there are examples of unauthorized private individuals
being issued Special Deputy Sheriff badges and identification cards. These
individuals used this unauthorized status to purchase firearms and high-capacity
weapon magazines. At least one of these individuals, who is an oral surgeon, even
assisted in the service of a capias on more than one occasion, including
handcuffing and searching a person who was arrested.
w A civil service secretary in the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office was improperly
issued a badge and identification card as a Special Deputy Sheriff.
w A civil service secretary in the New Haven County Sheriff’s Office at the
Waterbury courthouse was improperly given a Special Deputy Sheriff badge with
a badge number corresponding to a Special Deputy Sheriff badge issued to an
individual who is not a Special Deputy Sheriff. Moreover, since the individual is
not a Special Deputy Sheriff the badge in question should not have been issued to
him in the first instance.
w The policy that was adopted by the Office of the County Sheriffs in order to
control Special Deputy Sheriff badges has not adequately controlled purchases of
Special Deputy Sheriff badges.
The practices concerning the issuance of badges and/or other identification to “Honorary
Deputy Sheriffs” or other unauthorized individuals raise grave legal and policy concerns. These
badges and identification would strongly imply to an ordinary member of the public that the
holder has some official status and authority. Even more serious issues are involved in issuing
“Special Deputy Sheriff” badges and identification to unauthorized individuals.
At the present time the practice of issuing authentic looking badges and identification to
unauthorized individuals — individuals who are not actual Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy
Sheriffs — is a major continuing concern. Misuse of credentials that look official has been well
documented and shown to place the public in jeopardy. The ability of unauthorized individuals to
obtain official looking badges and identification cards from official sources presents even greater
potential for abuse. In many instances badges were sent in the mail to people who did not know
and had never met the sheriffs who sent the badges.
If necessary, the very practice of issuing badges and identification cards to anyone other
than those lawfully elected or appointed to valid sheriff positions could be barred by statute. At a
minimum, all such badges, identification cards and/or commissions, should be collected; the
Sheriffs should account for all that have ever been issued, and ensure that they are destroyed.
Finally, we have referred the above concerns to the Chief State’s Attorney to determine
whether or not any action under Connecticut’s criminal laws is warranted.
4
C. SHERIFF ASSOCIATIONS.
w Some sheriff associations have misused their tax-exempt status by making
political contributions, engaging in lobbying and other political activity, and
providing substantial personal benefits to some of their members.
w Several sheriff associations, including the Connecticut State Sheriffs Association
and the sheriff associations for Middlesex, New Haven, Tolland and Windham,
improperly use a state courthouse as their principal place of business, and as a
venue for meetings and functions. State courthouses should not be used by private
organizations.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has misused its tax-exempt and
charitable status by using its resources for political contributions, forming a
political action committee, engaging in lobbying and other political activity, and
providing substantial personal benefits to some of its members.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has misused its charitable status
by failing to devote a substantial portion of its resources to charitable activities.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has improperly subsidized liability
insurance and conference expenses for Sheriff Charles Valentino.
w The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has misused its tax-exempt
status by using its resources for engaging in lobbying and providing substantial
personal benefits to some of its members.
w The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has improperly subsidized
liability insurance for Sheriff Frank Kinney.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino received a travel reimbursement from
the state for attendance at a National Sheriffs’ Association convention for which
he also received a stipend from the Fairfield County Sheriff Association, Inc.
w Some Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs have received unauthorized per
diem compensation from the state for attendance at National Sheriffs’ Association
conventions. Two of them also received a stipend from sheriff associations for
convention attendance.
Sheriff associations may be liable under current law for misusing their tax-exempt status
by engaging in lobbying and other political activity, subsidizing expenses of Sheriffs, and
providing tangible financial benefits to particular individuals. Moreover, sheriff associations are
private organizations. They should not be using state courthouses as their principal places of
business.
5
Accordingly, we will request that the Department of Revenue Services join us in further
investigation of the above concerns and whatever further action is necessary.
D. IMPROPER USE OF A STATE SALES & USE TAX EXEMPTION NUMBER.
w The New London County Sheriff Department improperly authorized Deputy
Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to make personal purchases of items using a
state sales and use tax exemption number.
w The sales and use tax exemption number provided in the authorizations by the
New London County Sheriff Department simply does not exist.
w New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan has failed to account for all of the
authorizations which may have been provided to make personal purchases of
items without paying state sales tax.
There is no justification for authorizing subordinates of the Sheriff for New London
County to make personal purchases of items of any sort for which sales tax was due without
paying the sales tax. These authorizations reveal a scheme which created the clear impression that
the items purchased and used were purchased for the government even though they were to be
personally owned by the individuals making the purchases. Sheriffs simply should not be
authorizing anyone to make personal purchases of anything without paying sales tax.
Accordingly, we will request that the Department of Revenue Services join us in further
investigation of the above concerns and whatever further action is necessary.
E. CAMPAIGN FINANCE LAWS.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. made illegal campaign
contributions, including a $1000 contribution to the Valentino for High Sheriff
campaign.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. inappropriately used its own
resources to establish a political action committee.
w The political action committee formed by the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. was misused in billing for security services provided by Fairfield
County Sheriff Charles Valentino, along with several Deputy Sheriffs and Special
Deputy Sheriffs at the Fairfield University Commencement.
w Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs contribute most of the funds which
are used in the political campaigns for Sheriff elections.
Our investigation will continue to pursue information regarding the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. in light of its illegal contributions including one to the Valentino for
6
Sheriff campaign and use of assets to form a political action committee. This political action
committee has misused its status. Accordingly, we will request the Elections Enforcement
Commission to join in further investigation and possible action.
F. CODE OF ETHICS FOR LOBBYISTS.
w Although lobbying is the primary function of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association, this association did not report all sources of funds over $2000 as
required by the Code of Ethics for Lobbyists.
w The lobbyist registration and financial reporting forms for the Connecticut State
Sheriffs’ Association were not accurate.
w Although the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has paid lobbying
expenditures exceeding $2000 it has failed to register as a lobbyist under the
Code of Ethics for Lobbyists.
w Although the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has paid lobbying
expenditures exceeding $2000 it has failed to register as a lobbyist under the
Code of Ethics for Lobbyists.
The Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association has not properly disclosed all sources of funds
exceeding $2000 as required by law. In addition, neither the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. nor the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. registered as a lobbyist, as required by
law, even though each has had lobbying expenditures exceeding $2000. Accordingly, we will
request the Ethics Commission to join in further investigation and possible action.
G. EXTRA DUTY SECURITY SERVICES BY SHERIFFS.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino improperly arranged for uniformed
Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to perform security services at the
Fairfield University Commencement and at a concert sponsored by Fairfield
University. The Sheriff and all Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs
present at such events were in uniform. The Sheriff and some of the Deputy
Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs were armed. Funds that Fairfield University
paid in connection with these events were deposited into accounts of the Fairfield
County Sheriff Association, Inc. and Sheriff Charles Valentino. Extra duty work
by sheriffs should not result in financial benefit to private organizations or
individuals.
w Fairfield University paid $1200 for the security services at the Commencement.
The bill was from the political action committee formed by the Fairfield County
Sheriff Association, Inc.. The check was made payable to the Fairfield County
Sheriff Department and then deposited into an account belonging to the Fairfield
County Sheriff Association, Inc.
7
w Fairfield University paid $1500 for the security services at the concert. The bill
was from Sheriff Valentino. This check was made payable to the Fairfield County
Sheriff Department and then deposited into an account belonging to Sheriff
Charles Valentino.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino was deceptive when asked by the
Office of the County Sheriffs to explain what happened at the Fairfield University
events.
w It is highly inappropriate for the Sheriff to arrange for himself, Deputy Sheriffs
and Special Deputy Sheriffs to provide security services as sheriffs for the
financial benefit of a private organization.
Sheriffs should not be engaged in extra duty security work at all as sheriffs. Fairfield
County Sheriff Charles Valentino should not have arranged for the use of uniformed and armed
sheriffs to provide security services in exchange for financial benefit to the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc., a private organization with a history of illegal expenditures. Sheriff
Valentino should not have deposited a $1500 check made payable to the Fairfield County Sheriff
Department in one of his personal bank accounts. Since we do not yet have all of the facts
concerning extra duty security work by sheriffs we will investigate this issue further.
H. ADMINISTRATION OF THIRD PARTY FUNDS BY SHERIFFS.
w We have received information that some sheriffs have not properly administered
execution proceeds in their custody.
w Based upon evidence obtained during the course of the investigation we are
concerned about the administration of these types of funds by some sheriffs. Our
review of this issue in ongoing.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino has bounced some checks drawn on a
trustee account, an account presumably containing money that was not Sheriff
Valentino’s. The checks that were returned for insufficient funds were remittances
to a law firm of funds that Sheriff Valentino collected pursuant to executions that
he served.
All sheriffs who administer funds belonging to others should administer them properly.
Since we have received information that such funds have not been properly administered we will
investigate this issue further. We will report more fully on these issues after we obtain and review
relevant records and other information.
I. NATIONAL SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION CONVENTIONS.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino received a travel reimbursement from
the state for attendance at a National Sheriffs’ Association convention for which
8
he also received a stipend from the Fairfield County Sheriff Association, Inc. It
was wrong for Valentino to receive compensation from more than one source for
this event.
w Some Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs have received per diem
compensation from the state for attendance at National Sheriffs’ Association
conventions. This per diem compensation is not authorized by statute.
Per diem compensation should not have been provided for attendance at National Sheriffs’
Association conventions. Such compensation does not come within the statutory authorization for
providing per diem compensation to Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs. In addition,
Sheriff Valentino’s receipt of travel reimbursements for attendance at the 1999 National Sheriffs’
Association convention is questionable where compensation was also provided by the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for attending the convention. Accordingly, the Office of the
County Sheriffs should take whatever action is necessary to recover state funds which were not
properly paid.
9
I. PERSONAL PURCHASES BY DEPUTY SHERIFFS OR SPECIAL
DEPUTY SHERIFFS OF FIREARMS OR HIGH-CAPACITY WEAPON
MAGAZINES.
w The New London County Sheriff Department improperly authorized Deputy
Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to make personal purchases of firearms and
weapon magazines, including items of a type restricted to law enforcement use.
w New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan has failed to account for all of the
authorizations which may have been provided to make personal purchases of
firearms and weapon magazines.
w Some of the firearms and weapon magazines were personally purchased — for
personal use — by Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs exploiting their
peace officer status.
w The New London County Sheriff Department improperly authorized individuals
who were not sheriffs to purchase firearms and/or weapons magazines.
w Numerous firearms were shipped to the Judicial District Courthouse at New
London, although they do not appear in sheriff property inventories.
w Documents associated with many firearms transactions show the seller to be the
New London County Sheriff Department. These weapons never appeared in
sheriff property inventories.
A. LEGAL BACKGROUND.
Firearms and weapon magazines are heavily regulated by federal and state law. There are
numerous legal provisions which govern the possession, sale and transfer of such items. Some of
these legal provisions, relevant to the issues that we raise concerning authorizations to purchase
REPORT
Our interim findings and interim recommendations are explained below3 4:
10
4 In addition, the last section of this report contains some general background information concerning the sheriff
system in Connecticut.
3 Testimony under oath is in most instances referred to by the arbitrary designation “S-#” rather than identifying
the name of the person who provided the testimony. In addition, exhibits in this investigation that begin with the
letter “R” correspond to the exhibit bearing that number, but with certain information redacted by blacking it out
(the exhibit “R1” for example would correspond to investigation exhibit “1”, but with certain information blacked
out) and exhibits referred to in this report that begin with the letter “X” correspond to the exhibit bearing that
number, but are not included since we feel that including the exhibit even in redacted form would impede the
progress of the balance of this investigation in some fashion.
firearms or high-capacity weapon magazines in New London County, are well known and easily
summarized.
1. Federal Law.
Federal law contains specific provisions with respect to the sale of firearms to law
enforcement officers.5 Sales to law enforcement officers — which include a certification on
agency letterhead that the firearms will be used in official duties and that a records check reveals
no convictions for certain crimes — are exempted from certain forms of the U.S. Bureau of
Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. 27 CFR § 178.134(a).
In addition, high-capacity weapon magazines are now closely and rigorously controlled
under federal law. Under the present regulatory scheme, authorizations by a law enforcement
agency to purchase high capacity magazines have extraordinary legal significance.
Federal law provides that “[n]o person shall transfer or possess a large capacity
ammunition feeding device.” 27 CFR § 178.40a(a). A “large capacity ammunition feeding device”
is: “A magazine, belt, drum, feed strip, or similar device manufactured after September 13, 1994,
that has a capacity of, or that can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds
of ammunition.… ” 27 CFR § 178.11. In other words, transferring or possessing a high capacity
weapon magazine manufactured after September 13, 1994 is illegal. One of the exceptions to this
prohibition is “[t]he manufacture for, transfer to, or possession by … a State or a department,
agency, or political subdivision of a State, or a transfer to or possession by a law enforcement
officer employed by such an entity for purposes of law enforcement.”6 27 CFR § 178.40a(b)(2).
Entities who import, manufacture or deal in high capacity weapon magazines are required
to maintain evidence that purchases or transfers are lawful, which may include copies of purchase
orders by law enforcement agencies or other authorized purchasers or letters from law
enforcement officers. 27 CFR § 178.40a(c). Such entities may only transfer high capacity weapon
magazines manufactured after September 13, 1994 to law enforcement officers with a written
statement that the weapon or device is “being purchased for use in performing official duties and
that the weapon or device is not being acquired for personal use or for purposes of transfer or
resale” and a written statement from a supervisor of the purchasing officer “stating that the
purchasing officer is acquiring the weapon or device for use in official duties, that the firearm is
suitable for use in performing official duties, and that the weapon or device is not being acquired
for personal use or for purposes of transfer or resale.” 27 CFR § 178.132(a). Similarly, sale of
firearms to law enforcement officers which include a certification on agency letterhead that the
firearms will be used in official duties and that a records check reveals no convictions for certain
crimes are exempted from certain forms of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. 27
CFR § 178.134(a).
11
6 Another exception is possession of a high capacity weapon magazine lawfully possessed on September 13, 1994.
27 CFR § 178.40a(b)(1). This exception does not apply here since all of the authorizations for purchase of high
capacity weapon magazines referred to in this report were issued after this date.
5 There are also numerous provisions concerning sales to private individuals. Since we are only raising concerns
with respect to firearms transactions for which certifications of law enforcement status were provided, we have not
summarized the law concerning sales to private individuals.
2. State Law.
Connecticut law regulates many facets of firearms transactions. This well-established
statutory framework includes purchase, sale, delivery, receipt and carrying of firearms.
Ordinarily there is a waiting period for the sale, delivery or transfer of a pistol or revolver.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-33(e). A number of categories of law enforcement officers, including
sheriffs, are exempted from this waiting period. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-33(e). Similarly there is a
waiting period for the delivery of any other firearm. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-37a. A number of
categories of law enforcement officers, including sheriffs, are exempted from this waiting period.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-37a.
Carrying a pistol or revolver is regulated. A pistol or revolver may not be carried outside
of a person’s home or place of business without a permit to carry. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-35(a). A
person convicted of a felony and of certain misdemeanors may not be granted a permit to carry.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-28(b). Under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-32, if an existing permit holder is
convicted of such offenses, the permit “shall be revoked.” A number of categories of law
enforcement officers, including sheriffs, are exempted from the requirement to have a permit to
carry a firearm. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-35(a). Hence, the anomalous possible situation that a
person who may not be able to obtain a permit to carry a pistol or revolver due to a conviction
could nevertheless avoid the permit requirement by being a sheriff.
Since October 1, 1995 Connecticut law has prohibited purchase or receipt of pistols or
revolvers unless the purchaser hold a valid permit to carry, permit to sell, or eligibility certificate.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-36j. No one may be issued an eligibility certificate who has been convicted
of certain offenses or is subject to a restraining order involving the use or threat of use of physical
force against another, among other things. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-36f(b). A number of categories
of law enforcement officers, including sheriffs, are exempted from the prohibitions of Conn. Gen.
Stat. § 29-36j.
While Connecticut law regulates many facets of firearms transactions, law enforcement
officers are almost uniformly exempted from these laws. Sheriffs are typically included in the law
enforcement exemptions.7
B. AUTHORIZATIONS TO MAKE PERSONAL PURCHASES IN NEW LONDON COUNTY.
The Sheriff for New London County has on several occasions authorized Deputy Sheriffs
or Special Deputy Sheriffs to make personal purchases of firearms or high-capacity weapon
magazines. Such authorizations were typically made on the official letterhead of the Sheriff. This
pattern differs markedly from the common practice of police departments to purchase and issue
weapons for official law enforcement use. Police departments purchase and issue duty weapons to
properly trained law enforcement personnel who have an actual need for such weapons in the
normal course of their duties.
12
7 On the other hand, sheriffs are not included in the list of law enforcement officers who may possess assault
weapons. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53-202c(b).
Purchases of firearms and weapon magazines need to be evaluated in the context of the
actual duties that are performed by sheriffs in Connecticut, as compared to police officers, for
example. While historically sheriffs in Connecticut is have broad authority, they have not served
the customary law enforcement functions performed by police officers in modern times. Special
Deputy Sheriffs typically perform courthouse security and prisoner transportation functions.
These functions have not involved arming sheriffs. This custom formalized in 1999 in a policy
making it clear that sheriffs in courthouses were not to be armed. Ex. 1226. Similarly, the typical
function of Deputy Sheriffs is to serve civil papers in connection with the judicial process. This
function likewise has not customarily required Deputy Sheriffs to be armed. By contrast, police
officers have a bona fide need to be armed. Few if any normal sheriff duties in Connecticut require
them to be armed at all, let alone with restricted high capacity weapon magazines.
After the New London County Sheriff authorized the purchase of weapons and high
capacity magazines, these items became the personal property of the sheriffs who bought them for
personal use with no supervision or oversight. This practice is completely different from standard
police procedure relating to duty weapons with a high capacity magazine issued by police
departments for use by sworn officers.
Authorizations were provided to Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs to personally
purchase firearms on several occasions.8 These authorizations included the certification that the
requested firearm would be used “in the performance of official duties.” Ex. 1019; Ex. 1020; Ex.
1024; Ex. 1025; Ex. 1028. Most of these authorizations were on Sheriff Egan’s official letterhead.
Ex. 1019; Ex. 1020; Ex. 1024; Ex. 1025; Ex. 1029; Ex. 1170.
Authorizations were provided to Deputy or Special Deputy Sheriffs to personally
purchase high capacity magazines on a number of occasions. Examples of such letters, on Sheriff
Egan’s official letterhead and signed by Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors,9 include the
following text:
These magazines will be for law enforcement use only and not for resale. The
authorized officer(s) also agree to these restrictions as evidenced by the counter
signatures at the bottom of this letter. For purposes of this letter, high capacity
magazines are defined as magazines having more than ten round capacity for the
caliber of round intended for that particular magazine.
Ex. R32; Ex. 1021; Ex. 1022; Ex. 1023.
There were other authorizations for purchases of high capacity weapon magazines for
official use that had different text. Ex. 1026; Ex. 1027; Ex. 1028; Ex. 1029; Ex. 1068; Ex. 1170.
Many of the authorizations for personal purchases of firearms also included authorizations to
13
9 Several of those authorizations include Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors authorizing a purchase to be made
by himself. Ex. 1021; Ex. 1022 (although this authorization was for Martin Lane, Connors signed as the officer
who received the authorization).
8 Several of those authorizations include Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors authorizing a purchase to be made
by himself. Ex. 1019; Ex. 1020.
make personal purchases of high capacity weapon magazines. Ex. 1019; Ex. 1021; Ex. 1024;
Ex. 1025.
These authorizations to purchase firearms or high capacity weapon magazines certainly
appear to be an attempt to satisfy the provisions of federal law concerning such purchases. The
contents of these documents strongly imply or explicitly state that the firearms and high capacity
weapon magazines are in fact being acquired for law enforcement purposes, rather than becoming
the personal property of the purchasers for personal use. The problem is that these purchases that
were actually made in New London County were personal purchases by sheriffs whose duties did
not require them to be armed with firearms equipped with high capacity magazines.
We have attempted to obtain information from Sheriff Gerard Egan and the New London
County Sheriff Department to identify, among other things, all such authorizations. This
information was the subject of subpoenas issued on June 1, 2000. Ex. 342; Ex. 343. When Sheriff
Egan produced limited information which did not explain who was given such authorizations we
followed up on the subpoena by letter dated June 16, 2000, giving Sheriff Egan a sample of the
authorizations that we were seeking. Ex. 344. We received a response from Sheriff Egan on June
22, 2000 along with three sample letters. Ex. 345. That response did not include all such
authorizations that Sheriff Egan or Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors had previously
provided. Accordingly we followed up again on June 28, 2000. Ex. 346. This produced a short
letter from Sheriff Egan, dated July 6, 2000, essentially restating his previous letter and a longer
letter, dated July 28, 2000, which, among other things, claimed that records were improperly
removed from his office. Ex. 347; Ex. 348. We sent another letter, dated August 2, 2000,
specifically requesting that Sheriff Egan reconstruct as best as he can whom all such
authorizations were provided to, as well as certain additional information concerning the
authorizations. Ex. 349. By letter dated August 14, 2000 Sheriff Egan indicated: “I have provided
all written information that is in my possession.” Ex. 350. However, he has still not accounted for
all such authorizations that he or Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors may have given. Most of
the authorizations that are attached to this report were obtained from sources other than records
of the New London County Sheriff Department.
The practice of providing such authorizations raises profoundly significant and troubling
issues of law and policy. So does Sheriff Egan’s apparent inability to adequately document such
authorizations.
C. USE OF PEACE OFFICER STATUS TO MAKE PURCHASES.
The existence of authorizations for Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs to make
personal purchases of firearms and weapon magazines creates a significant risk that purchases are
made by virtue of sheriff status alone. Those purchases that were made by individuals who relied
on their sheriff status and who do not have permits to carry circumvent many of the safeguards
central to our firearms laws. A convicted felon who happens to be a sheriff could purchase a
firearm without having to adhere to the statutory waiting period. Moreover, a person who does
not have a valid law enforcement use for high capacity weapon magazines could make such a
purchase with an authorization like one highlighted in this report.
14
Our review of records associated with firearms purchases concerning the New London
County Sheriffs Department shows that firearms have actually been purchased relying on sheriff
status alone. Some of the forms associated with such transactions refer to a pistol permit number
as well as status as a sheriff, while others refer only to sheriff status.10
1. Many Purchases Were Made In Which Sheriff Status Was Reflected On
The Documentation Associated With the Purchase.
Sheriff Gerard Egan and numerous Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs purchased
firearms or weapons magazines in transactions in which their sheriff status was identified on the
relevant documentation. Some of the purchases were made from Reloads, Inc. in Manchester,
Connecticut.11 Others were made from Interstate Arms Corp. in Massachusetts.12
As an example, there is a Special Deputy Sheriff who has performed exclusively clerical
functions in the New London County Sheriff Department since 1995. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, pp.
10 - 11, 11 - 13, 24 - 25, 48. This Special Deputy Sheriff’s duties are “[t]yping, filing, answering
the phone, dealing with the public when they come into the office with their paperwork.” B.
McGuire 9/11/2000, p. 12. She testified as follows concerning her not having performed law
enforcement functions since she was appointed as Special Deputy Sheriff in 1995:
Q Now let’s go back to your duties for a moment. Have you ever performed
courthouse security duties?
A No.
Q Have you ever performed prisoner transportation duties?
A No.
Q Have you ever performed cell block duties?
A No.
Q Have you ever assisted in the execution of capias?
A Yes.
Q When was that?
15
12 Interstate Arms Corp. had an arrangement to sell to law enforcement agencies which required an authorization
letter on official letterhead. Ex. 1035.
11 This company is no longer in business as the principal of the business is deceased.
10 Just to be clear, a person who has a valid permit to carry a handgun may lawfully purchase a handgun by virtue
of having the pistol permit, whether or not that person is a sheriff and whether or not that person’s sheriff status is
disclosed on the forms associated with the transaction. However, in order for the pistol to come equipped with a
high capacity magazine the purchaser would have to have documentation showing a valid authorization to use the
weapon and high capacity magazine for law enforcement purposes. Documents associated with firearms
transactions do show the make, model and serial number of the weapon, but do not show the magazine that the
weapon is equipped with. Accordingly, we cannot tell from the documents that we have reviewed whether or not
the purchases that also show a pistol permit number did or did not include a high capacity weapon magazine.
A Actually, I’m sorry. It wasn’t a capias. It was -- I assisted a deputy for a
child, removing a child from the mother to give it to the father, so they needed a
female there.
Q How many times did you do that?
A I believe it was just once.
Q Was that done in the courthouse?
A No.
Q Do you recall which deputy you assisted?
A Sheriff Heap.
Q Have you ever served any criminal papers of any sort?
A No.
Q Have you ever served any civil papers of any sort?
A No.
Q Have you ever exercised any law enforcement functions?
A No.
B. McGuire 9/11/2000, pp. 24 - 26.
Notwithstanding her lack of law enforcement duties, this Special Deputy Sheriff received
multiple authorizations to purchase high capacity magazines “for law enforcement use.” Ex. 32,
Ex. 585, Ex. 586. She also purchased at least four firearms using her sheriff status. She
acknowledged that she never had a permit of any sort to purchase or carry any firearm. B.
McGuire 9/11/2000, pp. 5 - 6. She purchased several firearms using her sheriff status. Ex. 587;
Ex. 588; Ex. 589; Ex. 590; B. McGuire 9/11/2000, pp. 34 - 46. Her testimony about the weapon
magazines that she has was inconsistent. She testified that she does own the weapon magazines
that came with the firearms she purchased. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, p. 27. She claims not to know
the number of weapon magazines she owns. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, p. 27. She did receive
multiple authorizations to purchase high-capacity weapon magazines. Ex. 32, 585, 586. She
acknowledges that it is her signature on these authorizations. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, pp. 31, 33.
It was her understanding that the weapon magazines purchased with the authorizations were of a
sort restricted for law enforcement use. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, pp. 33, 34. However, when asked
specifically about the weapon magazines that came with specific pistols that she purchased, she
testified that she did not recall. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, pp. 38, 41, 44, 46. She also testified that
she never sold or otherwise transferred any firearm or magazine to any other person. B. McGuire
9/11/2000, pp. 47 - 48. Thus, according to her, any such firearm or magazine that she purchased
is still in her possession. B. McGuire 9/11/2000, p. 48.
There are numerous other similar instances of firearms purchases by Sheriff Gerard Egan,
Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs in New London County. Forms associated with a
16
firearm purchased by Sheriff Egan show a pistol permit number as well as his sheriff status.
Ex. 1057. At least 8 Deputy Sheriffs made firearms purchases specifically citing their sheriff status
on documentation. Ex. 1030 through Ex. 1033; Ex. 1037 through Ex. 1039; Ex. 1048; Ex. 1058
through Ex. 1062; Ex. 1069; Ex. 1154 through Ex. 1158; Ex. 1161; Ex. 1164; Ex. 1165. Another
27 Special Deputy Sheriffs, and possibly more, made firearms purchases specifically citing their
sheriff status was shown on documentation. Ex. 1034; Ex. 1036 through Ex. 1044; Ex. 1046; Ex.
1047; Ex. 1049 through Ex. 1052; Ex. 1063 through Ex. 1065; Ex. 1069 through 1081; Ex. 1160;
Ex. 1162; Ex. 1163; Ex. 1166 through Ex. 1168.
Some of these firearms purchases include a pistol permit number on the forms as well as
status as a sheriff. Assuming the validity of the pistol permit, the purchases of the firearms
themselves would have been valid even without sheriff status cited on the forms. A law
enforcement authorization is, of course, required for the firearm to come equipped with a high
capacity magazine. However, some of the forms reflecting firearms transactions only show sheriff
status. The transactions showing only sheriff status are the ones that are the most troubling.
Purchases made by individuals using their sheriff status, who do not have permits to carry,
circumvent many of the safeguards built in to our firearms laws. A convicted felon who happens
to be a sheriff could purchase a firearm without having to adhere to the statutory waiting period.
A person lacking any valid law enforcement use for high capacity weapon magazines could make
such a purchase with such an authorization.
2. Firearm and Weapon Magazine Purchases Authorized By The New
London County Sheriff Department for Individuals Who Were Not
Sheriffs.
In the course of reviewing information concerning firearms and weapon magazine
authorizations and purchases in connection with the New London County Sheriff Department we
also found instances of the New London County Sheriff Department providing such
authorizations to individuals who were not actually sheriffs.
There are two such instances involving individuals who are oral surgeons who were
improperly provided badges and identification as Special Deputy Sheriffs. The issuance of the
badges and identification as Special Deputy Sheriffs is further discussed in the portion of this
report which documents concerns with respect to issuance of sheriff credentials.
Sheriff Egan provided an authorization to one of them to use a requested firearm and
“large capacity ammunition feeding devices” in the performance of official duties and not for
personal use or for purposes of transfer or resale.13 Ex. 1170; Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 8 - 9, 14 - 15.
While this individual testified that he never purchased the firearm referred to in the letter, he did
purchase approximately six high capacity weapon magazines. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 14 - 15, 20 -
21. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 9 - 10. He never could have purchased these magazines without the
authorization.
17
13 We obtained this document from this oral surgeon himself pursuant to a subpoena. Sheriff Egan never provided
this document, or others like it, in response to subpoenas that we had previously issued to Sheriff Egan and to the
New London County Sheriff Department. Ex. 342; Ex. 343.
The other oral surgeon who was issued a Special Deputy Sheriff badge and identification
used this putative status to obtain a pistol. In fact, documents show that the New London County
Sheriff Department was the seller of a pistol to him. Ex. 1053. While these forms also show a
pistol permit number, they show this individual’s occupation as “OMFS DEPUTY”. Ex. 1053.
According to his testimony “OMFS” stands for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon. Sanfilippo
10/2/2000, p. 14. This documentation does not reveal whether or not this weapon came with a
high capacity magazine.
3. Conclusion.
Clearly, the purposes of the federal rules that make special provision for law enforcement
officers — either by exempting them from certain requirements in connection with firearms
transactions or by permitting them to possess high capacity weapon magazines denied to the
general public — is the need to be armed in their public safety enforcement mission. The required
certifications must recite the contemplated law enforcement use. They must state that the items
are not being acquired for personal use or resale. In fact, the authorizations provided in New
London County included such recitations.
Similarly, Connecticut law makes special provision for law enforcement officers. A police
officer, for example, is not required to obtain a permit to carry a handgun. Police officers are
highly trained, and are expected in Connecticut, and elsewhere, to be armed for legitimate public
safety reasons.
Whatever their duties decades ago, sheriffs now simply do not have comparable law
enforcement duties. They do not serve the customary functions of police officers, investigating
crime, apprehending lawbreakers, stopping altercations, or other similar tasks. Special Deputy
Sheriffs generally perform courthouse security and prisoner transportation functions. Typically,
these functions have not involved arming sheriffs. Indeed this custom was formalized in 1999 in a
policy making it clear that sheriffs in courthouses should not be armed. Ex. 1226. Similarly, the
typical function of Deputy Sheriffs is to serve civil papers in connection with the judicial process.
This function does not customarily require Deputy Sheriffs to be armed.
Accordingly, firearms and high capacity magazine purchases by sheriffs need to be
evaluated in the context of the functions that sheriffs actually perform. Sheriffs in Connecticut
have not typically performed functions requiring them to be armed, let alone armed with weapons
equipped with high capacity magazines. The documents generated by Sheriff Egan and Chief
Deputy Sheriff Connors purposely created the clear, unequivocal impression among vendors that
firearms and high capacity weapon magazines were going to be used for legitimate law
enforcement purposes when in fact these weapons and high capacity weapon magazines were
privately owned and only used for personal purposes.
18
D. FIREARMS AND WEAPON MAGAZINES WERE SHIPPED TO THE NEW LONDON
COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT AT THE JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURTHOUSE IN NEW
LONDON.
Records concerning purchases from Interstate Arms Corp., specifically including shipping
documents, show the entity to whom the firearms and weapons magazines were sold as New
London County Sheriffs. Ex. 1036 through Ex. 1045. These same shipping documents show that
these firearms and weapons magazines were actually shipped to the New London County Sheriff
Department at the Judicial District Courthouse at 70 Huntington Street, New London, CT. Ex.
1036 through Ex. 1045.
According to the State of Connecticut Property Control Manual issued by the
Comptroller, all agencies are required to keep an inventory of certain property, including
controllable property, specifically including “weapons”. Ex. 1099.14 “Controllable assets must be
inventoried on a regular basis… ” Ex. 1099. In response to our specific inquiry of the Office of the
County Sheriffs as to whether any of these firearms or weapon magazines were ever included on
the inventory records with respect to New London County, we were informed that no weapons of
any sort were reflected on the inventory records.
Shipping firearms and weapons magazines to a state courthouse, and the complete absence
of proper inventory records regarding clearly controllable property, raise very compelling legal
and policy issues worthy or further review.
E. THE NEW LONDON COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT IS SHOWN AS THE DEALER OR
SELLER FOR NUMEROUS FIREARMS TRANSFERS.
Records concerning firearms transactions include forms showing the New London County
Sheriff Department as the dealer or seller of firearms. Ex. 1046; Ex. 1047; Ex. 1049; Ex. 1050;
Ex. 1051; Ex. 1052; Ex, 1053; Ex. 1058. As noted in the previous section there is an almost
perfect correlation between these documents and pistols shipped to the New London County
Sheriff Department at the Judicial District Courthouse in New London.15
The New London County Sheriff Department should not be engaged in transferring
firearms to any individuals. It certainly should not be serving as the conduit for firearms and
weapon magazines being personally purchased by Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs.
19
15 One of the firearms shipped by Interstate Arms Corp. is shown as having been sold by Len’s Firearms & Marine
Equip. Co. Ex. 1048. Len’s Firearms is a dealer in firearms licensed by the U.S. Department of the Treasury -
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. The licensee is Leonard Weinberg. Ex. 1153. Leonard Weinberg is a
Deputy Sheriff for New London County.
14 This exhibit is an excerpt of the State of Connecticut Property Control Manual including the portions that are
relevant to controllable items.
F. THE NEW LONDON COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT DOES NOT MAINTAIN
ADEQUATE INVENTORY RECORDS CONCERNING CONTROLLED ITEMS SUCH AS
FIREARMS AND WEAPON MAGAZINES.
According to the State of Connecticut Property Control Manual issued by the Comptroller
all agencies are required to keep an inventory of certain property, including controllable property,
specifically including “weapons”. Ex. 1099.16 “Controllable assets must be inventoried on a
regular basis… ” Ex. 1099.
As noted in the above sections of this report, the New London County Sheriff Department
has been the recipient of firearms and weapon magazines shipped to it at the Judicial District
Courthouse in New London. The New London County Sheriff Department is also shown as the
dealer or seller for numerous firearms, as noted above. None of these items were shown on
inventory records.
In addition, there are additional records of shotguns, bayonets and scabbards being
transferred from the New London County Sheriff Department to two police departments. Ex.
1054; Ex. 1055; Ex. 1056. These weapons also do not appear on inventory.
There is no valid legal or policy reason why weapons and weapon magazines which were
shipped to the New London County Sheriff Department at the Judicial District Courthouse in
New London, reflected on firearms transaction forms as having been sold or transferred by the
New London County Sheriff Department, or otherwise shown as having been transferred by the
New London County Sheriff Department, should not be included in inventory records for the
New London County Sheriff Department. There is no excuse for the Office of the County Sheriffs
and Sheriff Gerard Egan failing to insure that property inventory procedures are properly
followed and that the inventory is accurate. They should take immediate steps to correct this
serious problem.
G. REVISIONS IN CONNECTICUT FIREARMS LAWS SHOULD BE CONSIDERED.
The firearms practices of sheriffs in New London County highlight a potential flaw in
Connecticut firearms laws. The current provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 29-33(e), 29-35(a),
29-36f, 29-37a exempt a number of categories of law enforcement officers, including sheriffs,
from a number of legal requirements associated with the purchase or carrying of firearms.17 18
20
18 This is a particular concern since it is well known that there are some sheriffs who have criminal records. Under
the provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-28(b) a person convicted of a felony and of certain misdemeanors may not
be granted a permit to carry a pistol or revolver. Under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-32 if an existing permit holder is
convicted of such offenses the permit “shall be revoked.” This creates the anomalous situation where a person who
may not be able to obtain a permit to carry a pistol or revolver due to a conviction could nevertheless avoid the
permit requirement through having status as a sheriff.
17 On the other hand, sheriffs are not included in the list of law enforcement officers who may possess assault
weapons. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53-202c(b).
16 This exhibit is an excerpt of the State of Connecticut Property Control Manual including the portions that are
relevant to controllable items.
There are compelling reasons for police and other law enforcement officers to be armed,
as compared to sheriff departments. Almost without exception such law enforcement officers who
are armed receive very extensive training not only in marksmanship and firearm safety, but also in
when and how to use, or more importantly how not to use, deadly. Police departments typically
issue the actual weapons that law enforcement officers are to use in connection with official duties
only for official use. They also mandate periodic training by officers who are armed to insure that
the training of the officers is up to date. Connecticut laws should be updated to eliminate the
anomalies noted in this report concerning sheriff status.19
H. CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS.
Reforms in practice and procedure are necessary to stop authorizations to subordinates of
the Sheriff for New London County, along with other unauthorized individuals, to make personal
purchases of firearms and weapons magazines of any sort, let alone firearms or weapons
magazines of a type restricted for law enforcement use. These practices involved a scheme that
led vendors to believe that these firearms and weapons magazines were going to be used for law
enforcement purposes even though they were to be personally owned by the individuals making
the purchases. To take just one example, what possible law enforcement use could a Special
Deputy Sheriff who really functions only as a secretary, have for 4 Beretta pistols or multiple
high-capacity magazines? The scheme was abetted by the practice of actually shipping the
firearms and weapon magazines to the sheriff’s office at the New London Judicial District
Courthouse.
As noted above, some shipping documents for firearms and weapon magazines clearly
reflect shipments to the New London Sheriff’s Department at its courthouse office. The inventory
records for this office do not show any of these firearms or weapon magazines. Inventory
procedures for controllable items such as firearms and weapon magazines were plainly ignored.
Moreover, there were no appropriations of state funds made for the New London County
Sheriff Department to purchase firearms of any sort. As far as we know, state funds were not
used to purchase any of the firearms that were shipped to the courthouse. Yet, the documentation
associated with these firearms purchases shows them as sold to the New London County Sheriff
Department and shipped to the New London County Sheriff Department at the courthouse. There
is also documentation showing the New London County Sheriff Department as the seller of many
of these firearms to individual sheriffs (and to one individual who was not a sheriff). If these
weapons were actually acquired by the New London County Sheriff Department, they should
21
19 A larger questions perhaps prompted by this practice relates to issuance of firearms to officers who have law
enforcement status. In light of the fact that weapons for official use are typically purchased and issued by police
departments themselves, which categories of law enforcement officers really should be exempted from firearms
laws, if any? Which types of law enforcement officers should be permitted to carry pistols or revolvers without a
permit to carry, on or off duty, or both on and off duty? Clearly some should, and should be appropriately trained.
Perhaps other categories of law enforcement officers, such as sheriffs in Connecticut who do not generally perform
the types of duties that call for being armed, should not. The Chief State’s Attorney and the Commissioner of
Public Safety, whose agencies are the subject matter experts in criminal justice issues, may wish to evaluate these
concerns in consultation with whatever other representatives of the law enforcement community they feel
appropriate, in order to suggest to the General Assembly appropriate improvements in our laws.
II. SHERIFF BADGES AND IDENTIFICATION.
w In several counties, Sheriffs and sheriff associations were involved in improperly
issuing badges and/or identification cards to “Honorary Deputy Sheriffs” or
other unauthorized individuals.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino appointed people as “Honorary
Deputy Sheriffs” in exchange for paying $150 to the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Fairfield County received a sheriff
badge, an identification card in the same form as that used for Deputy Sheriffs,
and a commission authorizing them to exercise the office of Deputy Sheriff.
w In Litchfield County, individuals joining the sheriff association received a sheriff
badge upon paying initial membership dues of $75 to the Litchfield County
Sheriff Association. For a short period of time Litchfield County Sheriff Richard
Zaharek also appointed a handful of individuals associated with the Torrington
Fish & Game Association, Inc. to the nonexistent position of “Associate Deputy
Sheriff.”
w In Middlesex County, individuals who joined the Middlesex County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. received badges.
have been properly inventoried and accounted for. If not, then they should not have been shipped
to the New London County Sheriff Department at the New London courthouse and certainly
should not have been shown on firearms transactions forms as being sold or transferred by the
New London County Sheriff Department.
Equally troubling is Sheriff Gerard Egan’s inability to account for the authorizations to
purchase firearms or weapon magazines. He was simply unable to do so.
There is no legal or policy basis for Sheriffs in Connecticut authorizing anyone to make
personal purchases of firearms or weapon magazines. People permitted by law to make such
personal purchases should do it on their own. All purchases that were actually made with such
authorizations should be immediately researched and identified and all firearms or weapon
magazines truly restricted for law enforcement should be recovered. Firearms or weapon
magazines that are no longer owned by the persons who purchased them personally should be
traced. Finally, proper inventory procedures should be implemented.
I. SUMMARY & REFERRAL TO CHIEF STATE’S ATTORNEY.
Connecticut’s firearms laws all have a criminal component. Accordingly, we are referring
the issues concerning firearms to the Chief State’s Attorney to determine whether or not any
action under Connecticut’s criminal laws is warranted.
22
w In New Haven County, individuals joining the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. commonly received badges. From our investigation there appear
to be at least 629 individuals who joined this association as “Honorary Deputy
Sheriffs”.
w In New London County, there are examples of unauthorized private individuals
being issued Special Deputy Sheriff badges and identification cards. These
individuals used this unauthorized status to purchase firearms and high-capacity
weapon magazines. At least one of these individuals, who is an oral surgeon, even
assisted in the service of a capias on more than one occasion, including
handcuffing and searching a person who was arrested.
w A civil service secretary in the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office was improperly
issued a badge and identification card as a Special Deputy Sheriff.
w A civil service secretary in the New Haven County Sheriff’s Office at the
Waterbury courthouse was improperly given a Special Deputy Sheriff badge with
a badge number corresponding to a Special Deputy Sheriff badge issued to an
individual who is not a Special Deputy Sheriff. Moreover, since the individual is
not a Special Deputy Sheriff the badge in question should not have been issued to
him in the first instance.
w The policy that was adopted by the Office of the County Sheriffs in order to
control Special Deputy Sheriff badges has not adequately controlled purchases of
Special Deputy Sheriff badges.
Among the concerns expressed to us was that some Sheriffs were issuing sheriff badges
and identification cards to unauthorized individuals. It was revealed during the course of our
investigation that this concern was meritorious. The most egregious concern was the issuance of
sheriff badges and identification to individuals in several counties who were not sheriffs. There
were also additional badge accountability issues that came to light in connection with this review.
A. HONORARY DEPUTY SHERIFFS.
Sheriffs have commonly made individuals “Honorary Deputy Sheriffs” in several counties,
sometimes as a result of the payment of money to a sheriff association. Typically a sheriff badge
would be included with “Honorary Deputy Sheriff” status. In some instances there would be an
identification card and/or certificate.
1. Fairfield County.
The initial membership fee for honorary members in the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. is $150. Ex. R133, R141. This fee includes an appointment certificate,
identification card and badge. According to the minutes of a meeting of the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc., Charles Valentino informed a meeting of the association on April 20,
23
1999 (after he was elected Sheriff, but prior to assuming office) that “5-point badges for honorary
deputies will sell for $150.00 including cases (our cost being $25.00), and their mandatory
background checks will cost them $65.00.” Ex. 199 (emphasis added). There is no indication in
any of the records of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. of the receipt of any funds
earmarked towards background checks or of any expenses for background checks.
Two Honorary Deputy Sheriffs who testified indicated that they met with Sheriff
Valentino at his office in the Superior Court for the Judicial District of Fairfield and filled out
paperwork, gave him checks (payable to the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.) in the
amount of $150.00, and received badges and identification cards at that time. S-108, pp. 10 - 16;
S-126, pp. 8 - 15. There is a membership application for Honorary Deputy Sheriff status in
Fairfield County. Ex. R529. This membership application makes express reference to a badge and
identification card as being the property of the “Fairfield County Sheriff Department.” Ex. R529.
Badges for Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Fairfield are 5-point gold color sheriff stars
including the text “Honorary”, “Fairfield County”, a badge number and the state seal in the
center.20 Ex. R131, R138. This is distinguished from the badge of a Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield
County which is a 7-point gold color sheriff star including the text “Deputy Sheriff”, “Fairfield
County”, with a badge number and the state seal in the center. Ex. R135. As Sheriff Valentino
explained, the types of badges at the April 20, 1999 association meeting: “[W]e will keep our
present 7-point badges, the special deputies will keep their present 5-point badges, and 5-point
badges for honorary deputies will sell for $150.00… ” Ex. 199. The Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. also facilitated the sale of a “millennium badge” by Sheriff Valentino for $52.00
as reflected in the minutes of its January 18, 2000. Ex. 206. A former Honorary Deputy Sheriff
who did not renew his status was not asked to return his badge upon his “honorary” status
expiring. S-144, p. 7.
The appointment certificate for Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Fairfield County appears to
be the same form as that used to appoint Deputy Sheriffs, although the word “Honorary” is typed
in. Of particular significance is that the appointment certificate for Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in
Fairfield County is the following text: “And I do hereby grant unto the individual, the said [name]
power and authority as my Deputy throughout the said County of Fairfield to use and exercise the
office of Deputy Sheriff, according to the laws of this State relating to the office of Deputy
Sheriff… ” Ex. R129, R140. These certificates are signed by Sheriff Charles M. Valentino, Sr. Ex.
R129, R140. In other words, these certificates signed by Sheriff Valentino himself purport to
authorize Honorary Deputy Sheriffs, who have no official status whatsoever, to act as Deputy
Sheriffs. It is also significant that the form used by Sheriff Valentino is different from an example
of the form used by Sheriff Edwin Mak, Valentino’s predecessor. The example of the form used
when Mak was Sheriff appointed the Honorary Deputy Sheriff “as my Deputy … to use and
exercise the office of Honorary Deputy Sheriff… ” Ex. R746. While Mak should not have
appointed the Honorary Deputy Sheriff as his “Deputy” his appointment certificate clearly
authorized only the use of the “office of Honorary Deputy Sheriff.” Since there is no office of
24
20 This is different in style from the “Honorary Deputy Sheriff” badges issued under the former Sheriff. The older
style badge is a 7-point gold color sheriff star including the text “Honorary”, “Deputy Sheriff”, “Fairfield County”,
with a badge number and the state seal in the center. Ex. R744. The older style “Honorary Deputy Sheriff” badge is
identical to the “Deputy Sheriff” badge, except for the panel that says “Honorary” at the top. Ex. R135, Ex. R744.
Honorary Deputy Sheriff known to Connecticut law, Mak’s appointment did not empower an
Honorary Deputy Sheriff to do anything. Valentino’s appointment certificate, on the other hand,
inappropriately and illegally purports to empower Honorary Deputy Sheriffs to exercise the office
of Deputy Sheriff.
The identification card for an Honorary Deputy Sheriff in Fairfield County notes the title
of the holder of the card as “Deputy Sheriff”, although on a separate line there is a notation of an
“honorary” restriction. Ex. R131, R132. This is the same form of identification card as that used
for Deputy Sheriffs. Ex. R135, R136. It is also the same form of identification card as that used
for Special Deputy Sheriffs. Ex. 97. We are aware of one Honorary Deputy Sheriff whose
identification card did not contain the “honorary” restriction typed on it — in the line for
restrictions this card has the word “NONE”. Ex. R138, R139. Here too Sheriff Valentino’s
practice is different from his predecessor. The late Sheriff Mak issued an identification card that
merely identified the person as an Honorary Deputy Sheriff, as shown by one example. Ex. R745.
On the other hand, as noted above, the identification cards issued by Sheriff Valentino to
Honorary Deputy Sheriffs are in the same form as those issued to Deputy Sheriffs.
We have identified 56 individuals who have purchased Honorary Deputy Sheriff badges in
Fairfield County during Sheriff Charles Valentino’s tenure. A copy of a list of these individuals is
attached as an exhibit to this report.21 Ex. 926.
Sheriff Valentino indicated to two Honorary Deputy Sheriffs who provided testimony that
their honorary status could involve their performing sheriff duties.
One Honorary Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield County testified as follows:
A. He [Valentino] told me that it was going to cost $150, that he’d have to
take my picture, that you were, if you ever were ever, so-called, to be called on for
any such thing you would be authorized to do so because you have the badge in
holding.
Q. Now tell us as best as you can recall what exact words he used when he
was saying that.
A. He just said, [S-108], this is what you have, this is the badge you are going
to receive, I need you to sign off on the card, I will take your picture for you; and
he gave me the oath, which I don’t remember.
Q. But when he was telling you about the possibility of your being called on,
what exact words did he use, as best as you can remember?
A. He said, At any such time that you will, that we would need your services,
you will be called on the perform duties that we had asked, such as serving papers
or handling any, he just said handling any situation that we would need you to be
called on, that was basically it.
25
21 This list is derived from a review of financial records of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. It does not
include anyone who may have become an Honorary Deputy Sheriff prior to the tenure of Sheriff Valentino.
Q. Did he specifically say “serving papers”?
A. Yeah, serving papers.
Q. I don’t want to put words in your mouth, so if I am not stating this right,
please correct me.
A. Sure.
Q. So he indicated to you that after you had this badge, if he called upon you
to serve papers, you’d be authorized to do so?
A. Yeah.
Q. Is there anything else that he said you’d be authorized to do?
A. Get free train tickets. I remember that, to get free train tickets to New York
or whatnot because I remember saying I was going to New York this weekend.
And we had talked about what we were going to do, and I said, oh, I was going to
New York this weekend and he said this would be the best thing to use, show your
badge and you will get a free ticket.
It didn’t work.…
S-108, pp. 13 - 14.
Another Honorary Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield County testified as follows:
Q Did he [Valentino] describe the possibility of being called upon to assist the
office in performance of its official duties at any time?
A I think he said in an emergency situation that he might have to call upon
honorary sheriffs. He might have described that to me prior or at the time. I don’t
remember exactly.
Q All right. Now, I don’t want to put words in your mouth, but as best as you
recall, if you can indicate to me the exact words that he used in indicating to you
the possibility of being called upon.
A I think exactly that, there might be a possibility if there was some
emergency situation, some state emergency or some -- just catastrophic,
emergency situation where it might require, you know, me help.
Q Did you ask him to elaborate on what that meant?
A No, I didn’t.
S-126, p. 16.
Sheriff Valentino erroneously created the impression that Honorary Deputy Sheriffs could
assist his office. In reality their “honorary” status conferred no such powers or status. Statutes
refer to circumstances when a Sheriff may call upon a member of the public for assistance. E.g.,
26
Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 6-31, 6-38; see also Conn. Gen. Stat. §52-53. These provisions “derived
from a time in which the public peace depended upon the ability of the populace to summon their
neighbors, through the raising of the ‘hue and cry,’ to come to their assistance when a crime had
occurred. [Citations omitted].” State v. Floyd, 217 Conn. 73, 90 - 91 (1991). Both historic and
modern legal authority indicate that this very limited authority is only available in extremely
unusual circumstances, taking into specified factors:
the urgency of the situation giving rise to a command for assistance; the availability
of other trained law enforcement officers, rather than untrained civilians, to come
to an officer’s aid; the nature of the assistance sought; the appropriateness of
commandeering the assistance of these individuals; the provocativeness of the
situation in which aid is sought; the presence or threat of the use of weapons; and
the risk of injury or death to the officer, to the individual being ordered to assist,
and to any other parties present…
State v. Floyd, 217 Conn. 73, 92 (1991) (footnotes omitted); see also: State v. Floyd, 217 Conn.
at 90 - 93; Eno v. Frisbie, 5 Day 122, 127 [(Conn. 1811)]; Kelley v. Kelley, 83 Conn. 274, 276
(1910); Swift, Zephaniah, A SYSTEM OF THE LAWS OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT, Vol. I., pp. 91 -
92 (1795).
Authorizing Honorary Deputy Sheriffs to exercise the office of Deputy Sheriff is illegal.
They have no authority to serve papers nor do they have any powers, either in an emergency or
otherwise, different than a member of the general public.
2. Litchfield County.
The initial membership fee for honorary members in the Litchfield County Sheriffs’
Association is $75, which includes the first year dues, a membership card and two window decals
(there is also an option of $40 which excludes the badge). Ex. 151. Annual dues for membership
renewals are $20. Ex. R149, 151, R256.
Badges issued to Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Litchfield County are 5-point silver color
sheriff stars including the text “Honorary Deputy”, “Litchfield County” and the state seal in the
center. The top panel of such badges is the name of the Honorary Deputy Sheriff. Ex. R147,
R254. The membership card for the Litchfield County Sheriffs Association merely indicates that
the holder of the card was appointed an honorary member of the association. Ex. R148, 150,
R254. The window decal is in the shape of a 6-point sheriff star and includes the following text:
“Sheriff’s Assoc.”, “High Sheriff Richard Zaharek”, “Litchfield County”, says “State of
Connecticut” in the center and has an expiration date at the bottom. Ex. 257.
One Litchfield County Honorary Deputy Sheriff who provided testimony obtained an
application from a family member who was already an Honorary Deputy Sheriff. S-106, p. 4. The
application form is represented in Ex. 151. This person does not know either the Sheriff or Chief
Deputy Sheriff for Litchfield County. S-106, p. 13. The application was mailed to the Litchfield
County Sheriff’s Association along with the family member’s renewal. S-106, p. 7. Within a
month of the application, this individual received a window decal in the mail. S-106, p. 10 - 11.
27
This individual then received a second mailing with a badge. S-106, pp. 10 - 12; Ex. R147. This
individual received a membership card, and believes that it came with the first mailing. S-106, pp.
10 - 12; Ex. R148. At no time did anyone indicate to this individual anything about the uses that
should or should not be made of the badge. S-106, p. 8.
Another Litchfield County Honorary Deputy Sheriff obtained an application from a friend
who was also an Honorary Deputy Sheriff. S-107, pp. 4 - 5. This individual does not know the
Sheriff or Chief Deputy Sheriff. S-107, p. 5. In this person’s words “I don’t know where
Litchfield is.” S-107, p. 5. An application in the form of Ex. 151 was filled out and sent in with a
check for the badge and membership. S-107, pp. 5 - 6. A badge, car decal, and identification card
were then sent to this individual in the mail. S-107, pp. 6 - 9; Ex. R254: Ex. R255; Ex. 257. This
individual was never contacted by the Sheriff or Chief Deputy Sheriff nor did anyone explain the
significance of having a badge. S-107, p. 7. No one indicated whether the badge conferred any
official status. Nor was any explanation given when the badge was mailed with respect to the use
or nonuse of the badge. S-107, p. 10.
We have identified 154 individuals who are Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Litchfield
County. A copy of a list of these individuals is attached as an exhibit to this report.22 Ex. 927.
3. Middlesex County.
The initial membership fee for honorary members in the Middlesex County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. is $65. R126. This fee includes a membership card and badge.
Badges issued recently are 6-point gold color sheriff stars including the text “Honorary
Deputy”, “Middlesex County”, a badge number and the state seal in the center. Ex. R119, R127.
Older badges were identical in design except that they were silver in color. Ex. R166; S-128, pp.
13, 18. This is distinguished from the badges issued to Deputy Sheriffs in Middlesex County. The
older style Deputy Sheriff Badge was a gold color shield including the text “Deputy Sheriff”,
“Middlesex County”, a badge number in the lower panel and the state seal in the center. Ex.
R171. The current style Deputy Sheriff Badge is a 5-point gold color sheriff star including the text
“Deputy Sheriff”, “Middlesex County”, a badge number in the uppermost panel and the state seal
in the center. Ex. R162. Some current Deputy Sheriff badges have the name of the Deputy Sheriff
in the top panel. Ex. R172.
The face of the membership card issued to honorary members of the Middlesex Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. includes the following text: “This certifies that [NAME] has been appointed an
Honorary Deputy Sheriff for Middlesex County. This Card has been issued to him/her for the
purposes of identification only and I highly recommend him/her as a respected citizen of my
country [sic].” The face of the card bears the printed signature of Middlesex Sheriff Joseph E.
Bibisi. The back of the membership card bears a printed oath. R125. Similar membership cards are
issued to Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs, the only difference being that they are
28
22 This list is derived from a review of records of the Litchfield County Sheriff Department and also from
information gathered from some vendors who provided badges for issuance to Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in
Litchfield County.
different colors (blue for Honorary Deputy Sheriffs, yellow for Deputy Sheriffs, and green for
Special Deputy Sheriffs) and the office indicated is Deputy Sheriff or Special Deputy Sheriff
rather than Honorary Deputy Sheriff. Ex. R167, R174; S-128, pp. 16 - 17. The membership card
for the Middlesex County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is very different in appearance from the
identification card issued to Deputy Sheriffs. The identification card for Deputy Sheriffs clearly
indicates status as a Deputy Sheriff along with the powers that come along with the appointment.
Ex. R163, R164, R173.
We have identified 58 individuals who are Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Middlesex County.
A copy of a list of these individuals is attached as an exhibit to this report.23 Ex. 928.
To apply for membership in the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. one has to
fill out a written application including name, home telephone number, occupation, name of
business, business address, phone number, date of birth, place of birth and whether or not the
applicant was ever convicted of a felony. S-99, pp. 5 - 8; S-100, p. 4. This is consistent with the
membership application process described in the association Bylaws. Ex. 492. The Bylaws make
explicit reference to issuance of a badge for individuals accepted as members. Ex. 492, § 3(f). The
application form indicates the name of the person who proposed the applicant for membership,
and for two references. S-100, pp. 4 - 6. In one case of testimony by an Honorary Deputy Sheriff,
this person did not know the two references on the application that was approved. S-99, pp. 7 - 8.
One Honorary Deputy Sheriff who testified was sworn in at a meeting of the Middlesex
association and given a badge. S-100, pp. 9 - 12. Another was sworn in at the Sheriff’s Office in
the courthouse in Middletown. S-99, pp. 9 - 11.
Applications to be Honorary Deputy Sheriffs are supposed to be submitted to the
Middlesex County Sheriffs Association, Inc. where they are reviewed by a committee. A criminal
background check is supposed to be made. S-128, pp. 20 - 21. The background check is done by
Sheriff Bibisi or Chief Deputy Sheriff Milardo. S-129, pp. 17 - 19, 27 - 28.
Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Middlesex County are told that they do not have any official
status. One Honorary Deputy Sheriff testified: “I don’t remember, but they just said you know, I
mean I was told never to say I’m a deputy sheriff, if anybody asked me. Just say, “No. I’m an
honorary deputy sheriff.” That’s about the only instruction I got. I had no deputy sheriff powers.
If anybody questions the badge, just to say that it was an honorary affiliation, and that I was not a
deputy sheriff.” S-100, p. 17. However, this Honorary Deputy Sheriff, who was issued the badge
shown in Ex R127, has the badge affixed to the exterior of the wallet in which this individual
carries a driver’s license. S-100, pp. 17 - 18. This individual also testified as follows: “I didn’t
really show anybody the badge. If I got stopped by the police, I took out my wallet. There was
one instance where an officer asked me what it was and I said it was an honorary sheriff’s badge.
That was actually the only other time other than the time I got the ticket.” S-100, pp. 18 - 19.
Another Honorary Deputy Sheriff in Middlesex County testified that the badge is kept in a
dresser. S-99, pp. 15 - 16.
29
23 This list is derived from a review of records provided to us by the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc.
Others also testified that Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in Middlesex County were told that
the badge could not be used for any personal gain and that it has no official status. S-128, p. 16.
“[T]hey are told emphatically when they are proposed for membership or when they are given the
badge they are strictly honorary deputies. They are not permitted to do anything beyond the
capacity of just saying they’re an honorary member of the deputy sheriffs association.”
S-129, p. 13.
A. [Sheriff Bibisi] tells them that they had to have been appointed as honorary
deputy sheriff, that they are not to use their badge to try and get out of speeding
tickets. If he finds out that they’re going to try to use their badge to get out of
speeding tickets or use their identification in that manner, they will be revoked.
He also tells them -- I don’t think he’s insistent about not to serve papers
or anything like that, but I think he makes them understand that it’s strictly an
honorary position.…
S-129, p. 21.
The membership application for the Middlesex County Sheriffs Association, Inc. indicates
that nonpayment of dues “Shall cause the revocation of said badge and it shall be returned to the
association.” S-99, p. 19. The individual who was issued the badge shown in Ex. R119 is not
current in dues. S-99, p. 19. Nevertheless this individual was never contacted by anyone on behalf
of the association or the Middlesex Sheriff’s Department asking for return of the badge. S-99, p.
19.
4. New Haven County.
The initial membership fee for honorary members in the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. is $75. Ex. R177. This fee includes a membership card, commission and badge.
The membership application itself references a badge payment. The membership application also
has a place for a signature by Sheriff Frank J. Kinney accepting the application24. Ex. R1.
Badges for Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in New Haven County are 6-point gold color sheriff
stars including the text “Honorary Dep. Sheriff”, “New Haven County” and the state seal in the
center. The top panel of the badge is the name of the Honorary Deputy Sheriff. Ex. R158, R175.
These are slightly different in appearance from the badges used by Deputy Sheriffs which are
6-point gold color sheriff stars including the text “Deputy Sheriff”, “New Haven County”, a badge
number and the state seal in the center. Ex. R806.
The membership certificate contains the following text: “Know Ye, That I, Frank J.
Kinney, of the Town of Branford, in the County of New Haven and the State of Connecticut,
Sheriff of the County aforesaid, do by these presents, constitute and appoint [Name] of the [Town
or City] of [Name of Town] aforesaid, an Honorary Deputy Sheriff under me the said Sheriff.”
Ex. R157.
30
24 Our review of 629 membership applications indicates that almost none were actually signed by the Sheriff.
The membership card contains the following text: “This is to certify that [Name] has been
appointed an Honorary Sheriff for New Haven County. This card is issued to him for the purpose
of identification and I highly recommend him as a respected citizen of my county.… ” The
membership card bears the printed signatures of Sheriff Frank J. Kinney and of the President of
the New Haven association. Ex. R176. This is different in appearance from the two part
identification card issued to Deputy Sheriffs which clearly certifies that the Deputy Sheriff has
police powers and is authorized to serve criminal and civil process. Ex. R808, Ex. 809.
We have identified 629 individuals who are Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in New Haven
County. A list of these individuals is attached as an exhibit to this report.25 Ex. 929.
One New Haven County Honorary Deputy Sheriff who provided testimony was
approached by a customer at this individual’s business to become an Honorary Deputy Sheriff —
the customer was an Honorary Deputy Sheriff. S-101, p. 5. This person does not know either the
Sheriff or Chief Deputy Sheriff for New Haven County, nor does this person know anyone else
who is a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven County. S-101, pp. 5 - 6. This person filled out an
application which was provided by the customer. S-101, p. 6; R480. This individual also wrote
out a check to the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. S-101, p. 7; Ex. R171. Both the
application and check were picked up by the customer. This individual then received a badge and
identification card in the mail. S-101, pp. 8 - 9; Ex. R175, R176. At no time did anyone indicate
to this individual anything about the uses that should or should not be made of the badge.
S-101, p. 9.
Another New Haven County Honorary Deputy Sheriff who provided testimony was
provided an application by a family member who obtained it from Domenic Jannetty, the Chief
Deputy Sheriff. S-105, pp. 6, 25. This individual filled out the application. R479. The application
was given back to the family member, along with a check for the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. S-105, pp. 10 - 11. A few months later this individual received a certificate in
the mail. S-105, pp. 11 - 12, Ex. R157. At some point after that this individual received a call
from someone at the Waterbury Courthouse that a badge was ready and to come pick it up.
S-105, p. 14. This individual went to the courthouse and was steered to an office, but does not
remember if it was the sheriff’s office. S-105, pp. 14 - 15. In a hallway this individual asked
someone where to go to pick up the badge. The person in the courthouse asked the individuals
name, went into a room and brought out the badge. S-105, pp. 15 - 16. The badge this individual
was given is represented in Ex. R158. No one associated with the Sheriff’s Department ever
explained to him what he should or should not do with the badge. S-105, p. 19.
5. New London County.
In New London County, issuance of “Honorary” sheriff badges was different from the
practices in other counties. As reported below, Special Deputy Sheriff badges and identification
were issued. The full extent of such activities in New London County is not known and our
investigation is continuing.
31
25 This list is derived from a review of applications for honorary membership in the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association which was provided to us by the New Haven County Sheriffs Association.
During the course of our investigation, we learned that New London County Sheriff
Gerard Egan actually gave certain individuals who were not Special Deputy Sheriffs badges and
identification as Special Deputy Sheriffs. Some of these individuals purchased firearms and/or
high-capacity weapon magazines as sheriffs, participated in law enforcement shooting matches
and even assisted in the service of a capias. This was clearly the most egregious irregularity in the
issuance of badges and identification that we reviewed in the course of this investigation. Relevant
facts concerning two individuals who were given badges and identification as Special Deputy
Sheriffs are summarized below.
(1) Steven Berke.
Steven Berke is an oral surgeon with an office in Norwich, Connecticut. Berke 10/2/2000,
p. 3. The Office of the County Sheriffs verified for us that Steven Berke was never a Special
Deputy Sheriff.
Berke was introduced to New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan through a mutual
friend. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 3 - 4. Berke has had a long interest in weapons and shooting and
discussed with Egan Berke’s interest in donating time for marksmanship training. Berke
10/2/2000, pp. 4 - 5. At a meeting in Sheriff Egan’s office Egan and Berke discussed Egan’s
interest in providing consistent firearms training for sheriffs and Berke expressed interest in
donating his time. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 5 - 7.
He [Egan] told me he would have to swear me in as a deputy sheriff in order to
affect this whole thing, which I thought was interesting and agreed to that. He
said, “Raise your right hand,” and I did that, and he swore me in.
Berke 10/2/2000, p. 7.
Sheriff Egan gave Berke an identification card. Ex. 1169; Berke 10/2/2000, p. 7. The
identification card contains Berke’s photograph and contains the following text on its face:
This is to certify that
Dr. Steven L. Berke
is a SPECIAL DEPUTY SHERIFF
for NEW LONDON COUNTY,
STATE OF CONNECTICUT, authorized for:
COURTHOUSE SECURITY
PRISONER TRANSPORTATION
SERVICE OF
CRIMINAL AND CIVIL PROCESS
including Police powers to enforce the
laws of this State.
Ex. 1169.
The identification card is signed by Sheriff Gerard Egan and does not contain an expiration
date. Ex. 1169. The back of the identification card contains the following text:
32
THIS BADGE IS THE PROPERTY OF THE STATE OF
CONNECTICUT AND MUST BE SURRENDERED UPON
TERMINATION. IF LOST OR STOLEN, PLEASE NOTIFY YOUR
HIGH SHERIFF’S OFFICE IMMEDIATELY.
Ex. 1169.
Steven Berke was also issued a sheriff badge. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 12 - 13. The badge
was a gold color 5-point sheriff star with the following text: “New London County”, “Sheriffs
Office”, and the state seal in the center. Ex. 1172. Berke was also issued a license plate for his car
indicating that he was a Deputy Sheriff. Ex. 1173; Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 13, 20 - 23.
Not only did Sheriff Egan give Steven Berke a badge and identification as a Special
Deputy Sheriff, but he also provided an authorization to Berke to use a requested firearm and
“large capacity ammunition feeding devices” in the performance of official duties and not for
personal use or for purposes of transfer or resale.26 Ex. 1170; Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 8 - 9, 14 - 15.
While Berke testified that he never purchased the firearm referred to in the letter, he did purchase
around six high capacity weapon magazines. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 14 - 15, 20 - 21.
Berke testified as follows concerning his understanding of his role:
Q When he [Egan] gave you the card, did he give you any instructions as to
what your duties or responsibilities were as a special deputy sheriff, which is the
title that’s indicated on the card?
A Yes. My duties and responsibilities were limited to training. I considered
myself, based on our discussion, to be a training officer, and that I would not be
doing any -- there was a list of duties on the front of this card, none of which
applied to me, in terms of courtroom security, prisoner transport, service of
papers, police powers, none of that was considered to be relevant to me, as far as I
understood it.
Q So that was -- did he actually state that to you or is that what you
envisioned your role to be?
A That was my interpretation. I don’t remember what he exactly said that day
in terms of -- I remember him pointing to a book of statutes of the state of
Connecticut and saying that within the eyes of the law, I was not a sworn law
enforcement officer; however, my duties, as it were, such as they were, would be
limited to training, which is, of course, all I was interested in doing.
Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 9 - 10.
33
26 We obtained this document from Berke himself pursuant to a subpoena issued to Berke. Sheriff Egan never
provided this document, or others like it, in response to subpoenas that we had previously issued to Sheriff Egan
and to the New London County Sheriff Department. Ex. 342; Ex. 343.
Berke testified that he never actually helped out the New London County Sheriff
Department with training. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 10 - 11. However, he did participate in law
enforcement shooting matches. Berke 10/2/2000, pp. 10 - 11, 17 - 18.
While Steven Berke was never a Special Deputy Sheriff he was issued a badge and an
identification card as a Special Deputy Sheriff, purchased high capacity weapons magazines as a
sheriff, and participated in law enforcement shooting matches as a sheriff. This should never have
happened.
(2) Ross Sanfilippo.
Ross G. Sanfilippo is an oral surgeon with an office in New London, Connecticut.
Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 3. The Office of the County Sheriffs verified for us that Sanfilippo was
never a Special Deputy Sheriff.
Sanfilippo was introduced to New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan through Chief
Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors, who was a patient of Sanfilippo’s. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 4.
Sanfilippo discussed with Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors the possibility of Sanfilippo
being sworn in as a deputy as a result of Sanfilippo’s interest in the sheriff’s department and his
having been an honorary deputy in New Jersey. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, pp. 4, 5. “… I believe I met
the sheriff the day I was sworn in as a deputy.” Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 4.
Sheriff Egan swore Sanfilippo in as a deputy. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 5. Neither Sheriff
Egan nor Chief Deputy Sheriff Connors discussed with Sanfilippo his duties and responsibilities or
authority. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, pp. 5, 7.
Sanfilippo was issued an identification card the day he was sworn in. Ex. 1175; Sanfilippo
10/2/2000, pp. 5 - 6. The identification card contains Sanfilippo’s photograph and contains the
following text on its face:
This is to certify that
Ross G. Sanfilippo
is a SPECIAL DEPUTY SHERIFF
for NEW LONDON COUNTY,
STATE OF CONNECTICUT, authorized for:
COURTHOUSE SECURITY
PRISONER TRANSPORTATION
SERVICE OF
CRIMINAL AND CIVIL PROCESS
including Police powers to enforce the
laws of this State.
Ex. 1175.
The identification card is signed by Sheriff Gerard Egan and does not contain an expiration
date. Ex. 1175. The back of the identification card contains the following text:
34
THIS BADGE IS THE PROPERTY OF THE STATE OF
CONNECTICUT AND MUST BE SURRENDERED UPON
TERMINATION. IF LOST OR STOLEN, PLEASE NOTIFY YOUR
HIGH SHERIFF’S OFFICE IMMEDIATELY.
Ex. 1175.
Ross Sanfilippo was also issued a sheriff badge. The badge was a gold color 5-point
sheriff star with the following text: “New London County”, “Sheriffs Office”, and the state seal in
the center. Ex. 1175; Ex. 1176; Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 7. Sanfilippo was also issued a license
plate for his car. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 8.
Not only did Sheriff Egan give Ross G. Sanfilippo a badge and identification as a Special
Deputy Sheriff, Sanfilippo used this putative status to obtain a pistol. In fact, documents show
that on July 18, 1997 the New London County Sheriff Department was the seller of a pistol to
him. Ex. 1053. Two forms which he signed with respect to this purchase showed his pistol permit
number as “195910” Ex. 1053. One of these forms shows his occupation as “OMFS DEPUTY”.
Ex. 1053. According to Sanfilippo’s testimony “OMFS” stands for Oral and Maxillofacial
Surgeon. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 14.
On more than one occasion Sanfilippo accompanied sheriffs with the capias unit who were
looking for people to arrest. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, pp. 9 - 12. When Sanfilippo did this he was
armed with a handgun. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 11. He was present when people were taken into
custody. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, pp. 21 - 23. Sanfilippo testified that he does not recall actually
assisting in taking someone into custody or touching anyone. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, pp. 22 - 23.
However, there is credible evidence that Sanfilippo actually did assist in taking someone into
custody on a capias.
Special Deputy Sheriff Waldren Phillips has assisted Deputy Sheriffs in connection with
the service of capiases. Phillips 10/3/2000, p. 3. Phillips testified about two occasions when
Sanfilippo joined sheriff teams in connection with service of capiases.27
… Chief Deputy Connors says I want you guys to take this guy [Sanfilippo]
out and get his feet wet. And, of course, we knew that meant to take him out in
the field and get him some action.
Now that would be to let him participate in all of the going on, affecting the
arrest, entering the doorway and even handcuffing and searching. To me that
meant let him do the job.
And like I said, that was the first time I ever laid eyes on the doc, and I was
instructed, myself and Sullivan, to take him out and get his feet wet and take him
out on the operation.…
35
27 There were also other individuals who were not sheriffs who assisted in child support arrests. “But I do know that
there were other individuals that weren’t sheriffs that were participating in these arrests. And they had the
credentials, I mean, they had the shield, they had a gun, they had cuffs… ” Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 28 - 29. Special
Deputy Sheriff Phillips does not know who they are. Phillips 10/3/2000, p. 28.
* * *
Q. Did you express any concerns you might have to Chief Deputy Connors?
A. No. You weren’t permitted to express anything to Chief Deputy Connors,
you just followed orders.
Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 7 - 8.
On this occasion Sanfilippo wore a duty belt with a sidearm, magazine clips, mace case,
and double cuff case. Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 5 - 6. The sidearm appeared to Phillips to be a Smith
& Wesson pistol with a magazine clip in it with 14 to 16 rounds of ammunition. Phillips
10/3/2000, p. 19. The magazine in the gun was of the sort generally restricted for law
enforcement use. Phillips 10/3/2000, p. 19. Sanfilippo also had a container of mace on his belt.
Phillips 10/3/2000, p. 20. Sanfilippo was wearing a New London County Sheriff’s badge. Phillips
10/3/2000, pp. 17 - 18.
Phillips did have a conversation with Sanfilippo about the fact that Sanfilippo was armed:
I said to him [Sanfilippo], I says, Excuse me, I said, Hey Doc, nothing for
nothing, I said, Look, let me tell you something. That side arm you got stays
exactly where it is, in that holster, and you don’t take that damn -- excuse me, you
don’t take that damn thing out of that holster for nothing. Even if I get shot or
shots are fired, you’re not to pull that side arm, do you understand that? And he
said yeah. I said please don’t. Don’t touch that side arm. And that was it.
The other sheriffs kind of got a little bent out of shape about it but I didn’t
care. I just didn’t want that civilian to touch that side arm because I had never seen
him on a range before.…
So I had a sneaky feeling he was playing cop for the day at our expense and I
had to kind of make the situation as safe as I could make it. And one of those ways
was showing that he didn’t take that side arm out of that holster. So, you know,
even if we knocked on the door and there was a rumble in the back behind that
door, he was not to touch that side arm.
* * *
But no, I purposely told him not to touch that side arm because I didn’t want
any problems.
Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 15 - 17.
During one arrest on a capias Sanfilippo told the arrested individual that he was under
arrest,28 searched him, handcuffed him and escorted him to the vehicle. Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 12
- 13. After that arrest, the arrested individual was brought back to the courthouse lockup facility
at 70 Huntington Street in New London, Connecticut. Back at the courthouse Sanfilippo told
36
28 Another Special Deputy Sheriff on the team also informed this individual that he had been arrested for failure to
make child support payments. Phillips 10/3/2000, p. 13.
Chief Deputy Sheriff Thomas Connors that he was very pleased to make an arrest. Phillips
10/3/2000, p. 13.
I could see by the look on his [Sanfilippo’s] face that he was very proud of
what he had just done.… He was pretty pleased with himself and the chief was
happy that he had a chance to taste what it was like to be a policeman for the day.
And we loaded up and went back out.
Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 13 - 14.
There was also a second occasion when Sanfilippo went out on a night operation. “… I’m
pretty certain that we affected a couple of arrests that night and the doc [Sanfilippo] was present
and he participated in the apprehensions. And even taking them to the correctional facility. I’m
sure he entered the correctional facility with us, even up to and including going into the booking
room and placing him in a side cell.” Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 22 - 23. Sanfilippo had the same
apparatus on this occasion that he had on the first occasion. Phillips 10/3/2000, pp. 26 - 27.
Sanfilippo also participated in law enforcement shooting matches. Ex. 1174; Sanfilippo
10/2/2000, pp. 17 - 21. Sheriff Egan issued him a congratulatory letter in connection with one of
these shooting matches. Ex. 1174.
Ross Sanfilippo testified that he did not recall ever contributing to Sheriff Egan’s
campaign. Sanfilippo 10/2/2000, p. 16. However, the campaign finance reports for Egan’s
campaign show that he made a donation of $100 on October 30, 1998. Ex. 398.
While Ross Sanfilippo was never a Special Deputy Sheriff he was issued a badge and an
identification card as a Special Deputy Sheriff, purchased firearms as a sheriff, and participated in
law enforcement shooting matches as a sheriff. His joining sheriffs in capias operations and
participating in arrests, including searching and handcuffing people who were arrestees,
jeopardized the validity of the arrests and created grave risks of improper conduct or physical
harm.
(3) Summary & Conclusion.
There is no justification for permitting unauthorized individuals to be given law
enforcement credentials, or authorized to purchase firearms and/or weapon magazines, and then
to perform official duties such as service of a capias. Sheriff Gerard Egan should immediately
account for all circumstances when Special Deputy Sheriff badges and/or identification cards were
provided to individuals who were not actually Special Deputy Sheriffs. He should also
immediately recover all such badges and/or identification cards to ensure that there is no risk of
misuse again in the future.
B. ASSOCIATE DEPUTY SHERIFFS.
In the course of our investigation we came across an “Associate Deputy Sheriff”
designation used only in Litchfield County. This title was phased out in 1999.
37
Historically, the Sheriff in Litchfield County designated a handful of individuals associated
with the Torrington Fish & Game Association, Inc. as Special Deputy Sheriffs in order to oversee
land that belonged to the association, and to oversee fishing on a reservoir that the association
had permission to use. S-163, pp. 4-5; S-164, pp. 4 - 7; S-165, p. 4. Sheriffs, including Sheriff
Menzer, Sheriff Wakefield, Sheriff Ocif and Sheriff Zaharek made Special Deputy Sheriff
appointments. S-163, pp. 5- 8; S-164, pp. 5 - 12; S-165, pp. 5 - 8, 10 - 12. While these
individuals were historically appointed Special Deputy Sheriffs, who in fact had arrest authority
under Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 6-43, 53a-3(9), 54-1f, the Sheriffs typically told them that they should
not be exercising any law enforcement authority and that if they needed assistance of that sort to
call the Department of Environmental Protection. S-163, p. 6; S-164, p. 6; S-165, p. 7. According
to one of the individuals with such an appointment, Sheriff Menzer said “‘Don’t go out and play
Wyatt Earp.’ That was the words he used.” S-164, p. 5. Sheriff Ocif told them that they did not
have arrest authority. S-164, pp. 9 - 10. Sheriff Zaharek was clearly uncomfortable with the
Special Deputy Sheriff appointments. S-165, p. 8.
The individuals from the Torrington Fish & Game Association, Inc. who received Special
Deputy Sheriff appointments received a commission. An example of this commission specifically
authorizes the appointee to “use and exercise the office of Special Deputy Sheriff… ” Ex. 877.
These individuals were also issued Special Deputy Sheriff badges which are 5-point gold color
sheriff stars with their name, the words “Special Deputy Sheriff”, “Litchfield County”, and the
state seal in the center. Ex. 880, Ex. 887, Ex. 892. They also received Special Deputy Sheriff
identification cards with text concerning police powers crossed out. Ex. 881, Ex. 884.
While Sheriff Richard Zaharek followed the custom in Litchfield County right after he
assumed the office of Sheriff, he had reservations concerning this practice. S-165, p. 8. In
subsequent years he appointed these individuals to the position of Associate Deputy Sheriff.
S-163, pp. 8 - 10; S-164, pp. 12 - 13; S-165, pp. 8, 9 - 10. The office of Associate Deputy Sheriff
does not exist. According to one of the Associate Deputy Sheriffs Sheriff Zaharek’s explanation
for this change was “There’s a big turmoil goin’ on, and this is the way it’s gonna be. And then
the following year … he said, I can’t do it anymore. He says, Things are crazy.… ” S-164, p. 12.
The Associate Deputy Sheriff commissions only granted “power and authority as my
Associate Deputy Sheriff throughout the jurisdiction of the Torrington Fish & Game Territory to
use and exercise the office of Associate Deputy Sheriff, in accordance with the spirit of club rules
and regulations relating to the office of Associate Deputy Sheriff… ” Ex. 878, Ex. 879, Ex. 885,
Ex. 886, Ex. 889, Ex. 890, Ex. 893, Ex. 894. This appointment did not convey any legal authority
of any sort. The Associate Deputy Sheriffs were issued identification cards by Sheriff Richard
Zaharek. Ex. 882, Ex. 883, Ex. 888, Ex. 891, Ex. 895.
Sheriff Richard Zaharek later had reservations about even designating Associate Deputy
Sheriffs for the Torrington Fish & Game Association, Inc. “[H]e didn’t know if he was doing the
right thing… ” S-165, p. 9. He declined to continue these appointments. S-165, p. 9 According to
one of the Associate Deputy Sheriffs, when Sheriff Zaharek declined to continue making these
appointments he said “There’s a big turmoil going on over in Hartford right now, and we gotta be
careful what we do.… So at this particular time, he said, we can’t do that, you know.” S-164,
38
p. 13. At no time following the expiration of these appointments did anyone associated with the
Litchfield County Sheriff Department request the return of any sheriff badges or identification.
S-163, pp. 11 - 12; S-165, p. 12.
Sheriff Richard Zaharek ultimately recognized the right thing by completely phasing out
these appointments. The title of “Associate Deputy Sheriff”, much like the designation of
“Honorary Deputy Sheriff”, never had any foundation or defined authority. Hence, at best it could
only generate confusions, costs and potential risks, without serious potential benefits.
C. OTHER BADGE ACCOUNTABILITY ISSUES.
Lack of adequate internal controls, including little or not oversight and accountability, was
also found in practices relating to civil service secretaries in sheriff offices receiving Special
Deputy Sheriff badges. Civil service secretaries are neither appointed nor trained as Special
Deputy Sheriffs. They should not be in possession of Special Deputy Sheriff badges.
1. A Civil Service Secretary in the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office Was
Issued a Special Deputy Sheriff Badge.
The civil service secretary in the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office was issued a badge and
identification as a Special Deputy Sheriff by former Sheriff Edwin S. Mak, although she was never
employed as a Special Deputy Sheriff. The badge is a gold color 7-point sheriff’s star with text
indicating “Special Deputy Sheriff”, “Fairfield County”, badge #330, and the state arms in the
center. The identification card reflects her title as “Spec. Deputy/Adm.”, badge #330 and an
expiration date of “permanent”. Ex. 97.
2. A Civil Service Secretary in the New Haven County Sheriff’s Office Was
Given a Special Deputy Sheriff Badge.
The civil service secretary in the New Haven County Sheriff’s Office at the Waterbury
courthouse is supervised by Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty. Jarjura 9/11/2000, pp. 3 - 5.
Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty gave her a Special Deputy Sheriff badge between 6 and 8
months ago. Jarjura 9/11/2000, pp. 15 - 16. The badge is a gold color 5-point sheriff’s star with
text indicating “Special Deputy Sheriff”, “New Haven County”, badge number “5003”, and the
state seal in the center. Ex. 591; Jarjura, 9/11/2000, p. 15. Her testimony was as follows:
Q And do you recall the circumstances of his [Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic
Jannetty’s] giving it [the badge] to you?
A No, I don’t. It just happened. Probably saw it and liked it. I don’t know. I
don’t remember.
Q Did you ask him to get you a badge?
A No.
Q So he just gave this to you at some point?
39
A Yes.
Q Did he tell you what you should do with it or what you shouldn’t do with
it?
A No.
Q Now, just to be clear, you’re not a special deputy sheriff?
A No.
Q And you’ve never been a special --
A Never.
Q -- deputy sheriff?
A Never.
* * *
Q After he [Jannetty] gave you the badge, what did you do with it?
A Put it in my wallet with my checkbook.
Jarjura 9/11/2000, pp. 16 - 17.
She was given a Special Deputy Sheriff badge even though she was never a Special
Deputy Sheriff. The badge number (#5003) on the badge that she was given corresponds to a
Special Deputy Sheriff badge that was in fact issued to Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty.29
Ex. 1098.
3. Special Deputy Sheriff Badges Are Not Adequately Controlled.
Beginning in 1999, Special Deputy Sheriff badges were supposed to be controlled. The
Office of the County Sheriffs issued Administrative Memorandum 99-9 reflecting new policies
concerning Special Deputy Sheriff badges. Ex. 1090. This policy notes, among other things, that
the Office of the County Sheriffs was now providing Special Deputy Sheriff badges to each
county; that these badges were the property of the agency and to be returned when an individual
leaves; and that “a roster of the numbered badges should be maintained … to ensure that persons
no longer associated with the Agency do not retain our badges.” Ex. 1090 (emphasis added). We
were informed by the Office of the County Sheriffs that under this policy it is only the Office of
the County Sheriffs in Hartford that is authorized to purchase Special Deputy Sheriff badges.
Clearly the purpose of such measures was to assure that Special Deputy Sheriff badges are
controlled. In the course of our investigation, however, we have found many examples of these
controls breaking down, with minimal or nonexistent supervision and oversight.
40
29 Moreover, Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty should not have been issued a Special Deputy Sheriff badge as
he is not a Special Deputy Sheriff.
We found many examples of Special Deputy Sheriff badges being ordered that were not
ordered by the Office of the County Sheriffs. If other persons are in fact ordering Special Deputy
Sheriff badges then the controls put in place by the Office of the County Sheriffs are meaningless.
There have been examples of Special Deputy Sheriff badges being ordered by Fairfield County
Sheriff Charles Valentino that were not ordered through the Office of the County Sheriffs. Ex.
1091; Ex. 1092. There are also examples of such orders by various people associated with the
New Haven County Sheriff Department. Ex. 1093; Ex. 1094; Ex. 1095; Ex. 109630; Ex. 1097.
The controls set forth by the Office of the County Sheriffs to control Special Deputy
Sheriff badges have never been effectively implemented. Immediate steps are appropriate to
ensure that Special Deputy Sheriff badges are properly controlled and accounted for.
D. SUMMARY & REFERRAL TO CHIEF STATE’S ATTORNEY.
It is clear that the practices concerning the issuance of badges and/or other identification
to “Honorary Deputy Sheriffs” or other unauthorized individuals raise substantial concerns. These
badges and identification would strongly imply to an ordinary member of the public that the
holder has some official status and authority. There is an even greater concern with issuing
“Special Deputy Sheriff” badges and identification, to unauthorized individuals.
At the present time, the practice of issuing authentic looking badges and identification to
unauthorized individuals — individuals who are not actual Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy
Sheriffs — is a major continuing concern. Misuse of credentials that look official has been well
documented and places the public in jeopoardy. A recent study by the United States General
Accounting Office, for example, focused on security breaches at federal agencies and airports
aided by exactly this type of credential. The GAO documented how it was able to breach security,
including security at airports and at the suites of federal agency heads, through the use of phony
badges obtained from public sources and phony identification made using commercially available
software packages or information downloaded from the Internet. Ex. 487; GAO/T-OSI-00-10.
Obtaining official looking badges and identification cards from official sources but issued to
unauthorized individuals presents even greater potential for abuse. In many instances badges were
received in the mail by people who did not know the persons who sent the badges.
As noted above, some of these badges, such as in New Haven County, are sent by mail
with no guidance to the recipient that they have no official status and should not be used. By
contrast, in Middlesex County, Sheriff Bibisi or an officer of the Middlesex County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. specifically warned new “honorary” association members not to use the badge at
all. The badges create a substantial risk of an unauthorized person misusing the badge, such as the
individual who testified that he attached the badge to the same wallet holding this individual’s
driver’s license. S-100, p. 17 - 19. The better practice is simply to eliminate using the legally
nonexistent “Honorary Deputy Sheriff” designation, stop issuing badges to “Honorary Deputy
Sheriffs”, and also stop cancel any identification cards that could be misleading. Similarly, the
controls on issuance of Special Deputy Sheriff badges should be substantially improved so that
41
30 Among the badge numbers referred to on this order is “5003”. Ex. 1096. This corresponds to the Special Deputy
Sheriff badge issued to Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty. Ex. 1098.
III. MISUSE OF TAX-EXEMPT STATUS BY SHERIFF ASSOCIATIONS.
w Some sheriff associations have misused their tax-exempt status by making
political contributions, engaging in lobbying and other political activity, and
providing substantial personal benefits to some of their members.
w Several sheriff associations, including the Connecticut State Sheriffs Association
and the sheriff associations for Middlesex, New Haven, Tolland and Windham,
improperly use a state courthouse as their principal place of business, and as a
venue for meetings and functions. State courthouses should not be used by private
organizations.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has misused its tax-exempt and
charitable status by using its resources for political contributions, forming a
political action committee, engaging in lobbying and other political activity, and
providing substantial personal benefits to some of its members.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has misused its charitable status
by failing to devote a substantial portion of its resources to charitable activities.
unauthorized individuals are not issued such badges and also to ensure that Special Deputy Sheriff
badges are only purchased in accordance with applicable policies.
If necessary, the very practice of issuing badges and identification cards to anyone other
than those lawfully elected or appointed to valid sheriff positions could be barred by statute. At a
minimum, all such badges, identification cards and/or commissions, should be collected, the
Sheriffs should account for all that have ever been issued, and ensure that they are destroyed.
Certain practices involving the selling of badges with deposits of funds into various
accounts, merit further investigation and scrutiny, For example, the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. solicited memberships (resulting in the issuance of badges and identification) as a
fundraising measure. Also, as noted above, the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. also
raised substantial funds in dues paid by honorary members who were issued badges. Finally, in
Fairfield County “Honorary Deputy Sheriffs” were also provided an appointment certificate that
purported to grant the recipient all of the authority of a Deputy Sheriff. There is simply no legal
authority for this.
The criminal provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53-341a prohibit selling badges or shields
identifying the wearer as holding a specific office unless the purchaser actually holds the office at
the time of sale. In addition, the provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53a-130(a)(3) make it a crime to
wear or display a badge or shield by which a public servant is identified with the intent of inducing
another to submit to the pretended public authority or to act in reliance on that pretense. Since
both of these statutes are criminal statutes, we are referring this issue to the Chief State’s
Attorney to determine whether or not any action under Connecticut’s criminal laws is warranted.
42
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has improperly subsidized liability
insurance and conference expenses for Sheriff Charles Valentino.
w The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has misused its tax-exempt
status by using its resources for engaging in lobbying and providing substantial
personal benefits to some of its members.
w The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has improperly subsidized
liability insurance for Sheriff Frank Kinney.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino received a travel reimbursement from
the state for attendance at a National Sheriffs’ Association convention for which
he also received a stipend from the Fairfield County Sheriff Association, Inc.
w Some Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs have received unauthorized per
diem compensation from the state for attendance at National Sheriffs’ Association
conventions. Two of them also received a stipend from sheriff associations for
convention attendance.
A. SUMMARY OF APPLICABLE RULES.
Different tax rules apply to different types of organizations, including the sheriffs
associations that we examined.31
1. Tax Rules Applicable To Business Leagues.
An organization of persons having some common business interest, such as trade and
professional associations, may seek tax exempt status as a business league under Internal Revenue
Code § 501(c)(6). Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, p. 42. Such an organization “must be primarily
supported by membership dues and other income from activities substantially related to its exempt
purpose. Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, p. 42. No part of the net earnings of a business league
may inure to the benefit of any individual. Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(6). Contributions to a
business league are not deductible as charitable contributions on federal income tax returns. Ex.
835, IRS Publication 557, p. 43. An entity organized as a business league under Internal Revenue
Code § 501(c)(6) must generally notify anyone paying dues to the organization whether any part
of the dues is not deductible because it is related to lobbying or political activities. Ex. 835, IRS
Publication 557, p. 12. Corporations exempt from income tax under the Internal Revenue Code
are not subject to the State of Connecticut’s corporation business tax. Conn. Gen. Stat.
§ 12-214(a)(2).
43
31 Included are the following: Connecticut State Sheriff’s Association, Inc., Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc., Hartford County Sheriff’s Department Community Charities Association, Inc., Middlesex County Sheriff’s
Association, Inc., New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc., Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc.,
Windham County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
2. Tax Rules Applicable to Charitable Organizations.
Organizations operated exclusively for purposes such as charitable, educational, religious,
and scientific purposes may qualify for tax exempt status under Internal Revenue Code
§ 501(c)(3). Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, p. 13. Contributions to such organizations are
deductible as charitable contributions on federal income tax returns. Ex. 835, IRS Publication
557, p. 13. To be approved under Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) the organization must show
that it is organized and operated exclusively for purposes which are beneficial to the public
interest. Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, pp. 20 - 21. “In general, if a substantial part of the
activities of [the] organization consist of carrying on propaganda or otherwise attempting to
influence legislation, [the] organization’s exemption from federal income tax will be denied.… ”
Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, pp. 38 - 40 (emphasis in original). Moreover, such “organizations
are precluded from, and suffer loss of exemption for, engaging in any political campaign on behalf
of, or in opposition to, any candidate for public office.” Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, p. 9. This
is the case “[i]f any of the activities (whether or not substantial)” involve supporting or opposing a
candidate for public office. Ex. 835, IRS Publication 557, p. 14. No part of the net earnings of a
charitable organization may inure to the benefit of any individual. Internal Revenue Code
§ 501(c)(3). Corporations exempt from income tax under the Internal Revenue Code are not
subject to the State of Connecticut’s corporation business tax. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 12-214(a)(2).
3. Other State Laws Applicable to Tax Exempt Organizations.
Tax exempt organizations in Connecticut which seek to operate as corporations may
organize themselves as nonstock corporations. A nonstock corporation must be nonprofit. Conn.
Gen. Stat. § 33-1026(a)(2). Engaging in or spending money on activities inconsistent with the
entity’s corporate purpose may be challenged in a proceeding brought pursuant to Conn. Gen.
Stat. § 33-1038(b). The Attorney General is authorized to “represent the public interest in the
protection of any gifts, legacies or devises intended for public or charitable purposes.… ” Conn.
Gen. Stat. § 3-125. Moreover, under the Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act, a charity may not
engage in a financial transaction which is not related its purpose, among other things. Conn. Gen.
Stat. § 21a-190h.
B. ANALYSIS OF PARTICULAR SHERIFF ASSOCIATIONS.
1. Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association.
The Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association has no official governmental status. It is
described in filings with the Ethics Commission as a trade association and as an association of
High Sheriffs. Ex. 762, Ex. 772, Ex. 773. The officers of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association are as follows: President- Middlesex Sheriff Joseph E. Bibisi; Vice President-
Hartford Sheriff Walter J. Kupchunos, Jr.; Secretary- Litchfield Sheriff Richard L. Zaharek;
Treasurer- Tolland Sheriff Michael Piccoli; Executive Director- John F. Getlein.32 See Connecticut
State Register & Manual (2000), p. 345.
44
32John Getlein is both a Deputy Sheriff and Special Deputy Sheriff for New Haven County.
The address for the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association is given as One Court Street,
Middletown. See Connecticut State Register & Manual (2000), p. 345. This address is also shown
as the address of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association in numerous filings with the Ethics
Commission. Ex. 761 through Ex. 780, Ex. 782. This address happens to be the courthouse for
the Judicial District of Middlesex. Custom and accepted practice preclude the use of a courthouse
for purposes other than official state functions associated with the administration of justice. A
private organization, such as the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association, would normally be
barred from using a courthouse as its address.
We reviewed the deposits and withdrawals from the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association checking account at Fleet Bank which we obtained pursuant to a subpoena.33 Based
upon that review it seems clear to us that during the past few years the primary purpose of this
organization was lobbying.
Our review covered deposits and withdrawals from January 1997 through April 2000.
During that period, $57,243 out of $60,743 in income, or 94.2% of the income of the Connecticut
State Sheriffs’ Association was expressly designated for lobbyist fees. Ex. 1141. Our analysis also
shows that $62,017.74 out of $66,340.01, or 93.5% of the expenses of the Connecticut State
Sheriffs’ Association are for lobbying. Ex. 1141.
2. Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is organized as a charity under Internal
Revenue Code § 501(c)(3).
(1) Organizational History.
The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. was first incorporated in August 1984 as a
Connecticut nonstock corporation. Ex. 216. Its certificate of incorporation was amended in
November 1986, among other things, to clearly establish this organization as a charitable
organization under Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3).34 Ex. 217.
In 1997 and 1998 Ronald Z. Kadar was the President of the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. Ex. 218, Ex. 219. Kadar is a Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield. Terry L. Brown was
the Secretary. Ex. 218, 219. Brown is a Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield. George F. Hammel was the
Treasurer. Ex. 218, 219. Hammel is a Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield. In 1999 Edward J. Fennell
became the President. Ex. 220. Fennell is a Deputy Sheriff for Fairfield. Brown and Hammel
remained Secretary and Treasurer, respectively. Ex. 220.
45
34 Organizations which have been approved by the Internal Revenue Service as charitable organizations pursuant to
Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) are listed in IRS Publication 78, which is also searchable on the internet at
http://www.irs.gov/search/eosearch.html. The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. does appear on this list.
33 A subpoena was also issued to Sheriff Michael Piccoli, who is the Treasurer of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association, for records, including financial records of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. Since Sheriff
Piccoli sought to quash the subpoena issued to him for these records we have not yet been able to complete our
review of records concerning the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association.
Periodic filings with the Secretary of the State for the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. since 1997 show its principal place of business to be 364 Ellsworth Street in
Bridgeport. Ex. 218, 219, 220. This was the residence of former Sheriff Edwin Mak. According
to this association’s Form 990-EZ for 199835 the organization’s address is 115 Canoe Brook
Road, Trumbull, Connecticut, which is the address of the current Treasurer. Ex. 899.
(2) Revenue of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
We reviewed records of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. covering the time
period from January 1, 1997 through April 15, 2000. During this time period the Fairfield County
Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. received revenue of $168,286.34. Ex. 1145. The largest revenue items
are dues and insurance. Ex. 1145.
According to the Constitution36 of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.,
membership is restricted to Deputy Sheriffs. Ex. 490, Art. II(A). Most of the association’s
revenues were derived from the membership of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex.
1145. Each member currently pays dues of $550 per year for liability insurance37, $250 per year
for dues, and a $100 per year lobbyist fee. Ex. 1121. Concerns expressed by Deputy Sheriffs raise
the issue of whether payments are compulsory rather than voluntary. In fact, the Constitution of
the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. purports to mandate that nonpayment of insurance
results in automatic surrender of the authority to conduct business as a Deputy Sheriff. Ex. 490,
Art. II(B)(3)(c). Nonpayment of dues also appears to have the same result. As only one example,
minutes of the October 19, 1999 meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
recommend that the Sheriff remove a Deputy Sheriff from his position since he was not current in
association dues. Ex. 203. The minutes of the following meeting, on November 16, 1999, include
a report that all members were current in dues. Ex. 204.
During this time period net revenues of $21,098 were received from special events such as
Christmas parties, Sheriffs’ Balls and picnics. Ex. 1145. In addition, there were revenues of
$11,178 from the sale of items such as honorary badges.38 Ex. 1145.
46
38 To take badges as an example, the minutes of meetings of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. indicate
that badges were to “sell for $150 including cases (our cost being $25.00).” Ex. 199. This would bring a profit of
$125 to the association for each badge sold.
37 This is reduced from previous years due to a change in the policy.
36 The Constitution and Bylaws which appear to be the current version, adopted in September 1983 and revised and
amended on June 21, 1994, are included as an exhibit to this report. Ex. 490. There is a later draft version that
appears by text at the bottom of the last page to have been considered in 1999. Ex. 491. However, it does not
appear to have been approved at any meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. in 1999. Ex. 491.
The minutes of the December 1, 1999 meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show some
amendments, but do not show the 1999 draft to have been adopted. Ex. 205.
35 This document is publicly available through an organization that posts information concerning charities on the
Internet at http://www.guidestar.org. This specific document may be retrieved from the Internet at the following
address: http://pdf.guidestar.org/1998/222/686/1998-222686608-1-z.pdf.
(3) Expenses of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
A review of records of the expenses of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
shows that many of those expenses are inappropriate for a charitable organization.
(a) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Subsidizes
Some Expenses of the Sheriff, Chief Deputy Sheriff, and
Certain of its Officers.
The Constitution & Bylaws of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. do not
authorize subsidies for the Sheriff, Chief Deputy Sheriff or any other person. Ex. 490; Ex. 491.
The association however, has in fact historically provided subsidies for several people, including
the Sheriff and Chief Deputy Sheriff, as well as the President, Treasurer and Secretary of the
association.
The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. subsidies go back at least to 1994. In 1994
the Sheriff was provided $1000 annually for the National Sheriffs Association (“NSA”)
convention, a $2000 discretionary fund, no charge for insurance, no charge for association dues,
no charge for subsequent assessments, and 10 tickets without charge for any event or dinner. The
Chief Deputy Sheriff was exempted from any charge for insurance, association dues and
subsequent assessments. The President was provided $500 for attending the NSA convention.
The Treasurer was provided a 50% credit for insurance, no charge for association dues and a 50%
credit for subsequent assessments. The Secretary was provided a 50% credit for insurance, 50%
credit for association dues and 50% credit for subsequent assessments.
These subsidies continue to the present. The budget assumptions for the 1999-2000 and
2000-2001 budgets for the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. clearly reflect a full subsidy
for insurance, dues, lobbying fees and additional assessments for the Sheriff and Chief Deputy
Sheriff. These budget assumptions also reflect a 50% subsidy for insurance, dues, lobbying fees
and additional assessments for the President, Treasurer and Secretary of the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex. 1122; Ex. 1123. These budget assumptions also reflect subsidies for
the NSA convention39. Ex. 1122; Ex. 1123. A budget comparison for the current and previous
four years shows expenses for NSA travel. Ex. 1121.
The subsidies are also shown on Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. records
keeping track of member payments. An example is attached as an exhibit to this report. Ex. 1124.
It is clear from reviewing Ex. 1124 that Sheriff Charles Valentino and Chief Deputy Sheriff
Magnuson are not required to pay anything for insurance, dues, or lobbyist expenses. Ex. 1124. It
is also clear that the President, Secretary and Treasurer of the Fairfield County Sheriffs
47
39 The minutes of the meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for March 25, 1997 indicate that
the NSA convention subsidy for the President of the association was removed from the budget. Ex. 180. The
minutes of the meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for May 26, 1998 indicate that the NSA
convention subsidy for the President of the association was removed from the budget. Ex. 191. The minutes of the
meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for April 20, 1999 indicate that the NSA convention
subsidy for the President of the association was removed from the budget. Ex. 199. The subsidy for the Sheriff was
not removed from the budget.
Association, Inc. only pay 50% of what other members pay. Ex. 1124. These five individuals are
included as named insureds on the liability insurance policy. Ex. 1125. They also received
certificates of insurance reflecting coverage under the liability insurance policy. Ex. 1126.
These subsidies appear to confer specific personal financial benefits on particular
individuals. The granting of such personal financial benefits is inconsistent the legal status of the
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. as a charitable organization. We are also concerned
about the provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-46 which prohibit a Sheriff from receiving or
demanding a benefit from a Deputy Sheriff. The fact that the Sheriff receives a liability insurance
benefit which is in fact paid for by the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc., an association
largely supported by dues and other payments by Deputy Sheriffs, as well as other subsidies,
appears to us to be a benefit that the Sheriff is receiving from Deputy Sheriffs in violation of the
statute.
(b) Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Payments for
Lobbying.
Another substantial expense item for the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is
lobbying. During the time period that we reviewed, total lobbying expenses were $12,790. Ex.
1145. Of that sum, $7,790 were paid to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. Ex. 541,
Ex. 543.
Until 2000, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. routinely made checks payable
for lobbying to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. In 1997, the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. paid $3400 to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. Ex. 801. Meeting
minutes of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for a meeting on April 21, 1998
discussed a lobbyist fee of $3800. Ex. 190. Meeting minutes for a meeting on January 19, 1999
discussed a check for $3,895. Ex. 196, Ex. 802. In fact, the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association generally billed the Sheriff in the form of an “assessment” for lobbying expenses. Ex.
532. The Fairfield Association in fact paid two amounts to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association. A check (#1040) was dated January 19, 1999 in the amount of $3,895. This was for
1998 expenses. Ex. 532. On March 16, 1999, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
authorized “High Sheriff-Elect Charles Valentino to choose the lobbyist that our Association hires
to represent us this year.” Ex. 198. Another check (#1052A) was dated April 25, 1999 in the
amount of $3,895. Ex. 543, Ex. 803. This was for 1999 expenses. Ex. 532. That the 1998
expenses were not paid until 1999 is also acknowledged in the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc.’s Form 990-EZ for 1998. Ex. 899.
Meeting minutes for the January 18, 2000 meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc., reflecting a new lobbyist, show that Stephen Duffy, “our lobbyist”, was at the
meeting, represented all of the counties, and would bill the association directly. Ex. 206. Such a
bill for $5000, dated January 20, 2000, was in fact sent to the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc.. Ex. 533. It was paid by the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. by check
dated January 26, 2000. Ex. 556.
48
(c) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Has Used Its
Financial Resources for Political Activity.
There is clear evidence of illegal campaign contributions by the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc.
On September 15, 1999 the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. considered a
motion to “donate $1000 to Charlie’s campaign”. Ex. 193. The sum of $1000 was in fact
contributed to the Valentino for High Sheriff campaign committee.40 Ex. 539. This check is dated
September 15, 1998. Ex. 539. This appears on the campaign finance statement for the campaign
committee for this time period. Ex. 358. In addition, the sum of $300 was contributed to
Connecticut Republicans.41 Ex. 548. These political contribution do not appear on the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc.’s Form 990-EZ for 1998 that was filed with the Internal
Revenue Service.42
Finally, also as noted in more detail in the portion of this report discussing campaign
finance, $1,500 in funds of the Fairfield County Sheriff Association, Inc. were used in connection
with establishing a political action committee (“PAC”). Ex. 204, Ex. 208, Ex. 531. These funds
were paid out, and the PAC was organized, prior to the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
even authorizing the expense. Ex. 457, Ex. 458, Ex. 459, Ex. 531.
The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. also appears to have been directly involved
in the political process of screening candidates for Sheriff, an elected office. Minutes of the March
25, 1997 meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show that it formed a
Screening Committee for candidates for Sheriff. Ex. 180. Minutes of the November 18, 1997
meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show that it received four applications
for Sheriff, planned to report on candidates who refused to fill out applications, and was doing
background checks on the candidates. Ex. 185. Since the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. was not registered as a Political Action Committee, it should not have played any role in the
process by which a candidate for an elected office was chosen. We are also concerned that an
organization set up as a charity, like the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc., became
involved directly in political activity.
49
42 Line 37 of the form shows an expense of $3,895 which is explained in the attached statement as a lobbying
expense. Ex. 899. The political contribution to Valentino’s campaign simply does not appear on the form.
41 We note that the Connecticut Republicans immediately recognized that the check came from an inappropriate
source and promptly returned it. Ex. 549. The Connecticut Republicans acted properly by returning the check and
has no responsibility for the actions of the Fairfield County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc.
40 This contribution was made on September 15, 1998, being a date prior to the general election. Ex. 359. This
means that the Valentino campaign had full use of these funds during the election campaign. On February 17,
1999, well after the general election at which Valentino was elected, the Valentino campaign made a $1000
payment, corresponding to these funds, to “Connecticut General Fund c/o Campaign Enforcement Div.” Ex. 366.
(d) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Has Provided
Other Tangible Benefits to Specific Individuals.
As noted above, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has subsidized liability
insurance, dues, lobbying fees and conference expenses for certain individuals. It is also clear from
a review of records of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. that other tangible benefits
have been provided to certain individuals.
Among the tangible benefits provided to former Sheriff Edwin Mak, were, for example,
that the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. provided an honorarium of $3000 at the end of
his term as Sheriff. Ex. 544. This payment was authorized at a May 18, 1999 meeting of the
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex. 200. The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. also provided former Sheriff Edwin Mak a payment of $1000 for the National Sheriffs
Association convention for 1998. Ex. 536. In addition, the association paid $1,495.60 towards the
hotel bill for attendance at this convention. Ex. 1134. The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association,
Inc. provided former Sheriff Edwin Mak a cruise in Maine at a cost of $352.33, which was billed
to the association by a Deputy Sheriff. Ex. 534. The association paid this bill. Ex. 545. Finally, the
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. provided Sheriff Charles M. Valentino, Sr. a payment
of $1000 for the National Sheriffs Association convention for 1999. Ex. 546.
We have also been informed that the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is
covering the legal expenses of several Deputy Sheriffs in Fairfield County who have sought to
quash subpoenas issued in connection with this investigation for records. While we certainly
respect their right to obtain legal representation, using charitable funds, such as the funds of the
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc., is improper and perhaps illegal A tangible personal
benefit cannot be provided from charitable funds.
(e) Although it is Organized as a Charity, the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. has Devoted Only a Tiny Portion of
its Funds For Charity.
Although the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is organized as a charitable
organization, only a tiny portion of its funds are actually used for charitable purposes. Moreover,
the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. made no expenditures for some charity programs
mentioned in meeting minutes.
Expenditures which appear to be charitable in nature during the period that we reviewed
are as follows: (1) $500 to Gustave Vaillant for a “needy family”, Ex. 550; and, (2) $200 to
WICC Toys for Tots, Ex. 550. This total is $700. In addition, there were the following two
contributions made in memory of Edwin Mak, the late Sheriff: (1) $1,000 to St. Emery’s Roman
Catholic Church, Ex. 547; and, (2) $50 to the Fairfield Elks Scholarship fund, Ex. 557. If the
contributions in memory of Mak are added the total expenditures which appear to be charitable in
nature is $1,750. Ex. 1145.
50
As noted above, even giving the benefit of the doubt to the Fairfield County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. only $1,750 of the $148,686.05 revenue generated during the period of January
1, 1997 through April 15, 2000 were devoted to charitable purposes. This fact, combined with
tangible financial benefits to individuals raises very serious questions about whether or not the
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is a bona fide charity.
(4) Referral to Department of Revenue Services.
All of this information, along with other evidence, raises several concerns about the
possible misuse of this organization’s tax-exempt status. Accordingly, we are referring this matter
to the Department of Revenue Services to further evaluate these issues, and to take whatever
further action is warranted.
3. Hartford County Sheriff’s Department Community Charities Association,
Inc.
The Hartford County Sheriff’s Department Community Charities Association, Inc. was
incorporated in October 1995 as a Connecticut nonstock corporation. Ex. 896. The Certificate of
Incorporation was amended in 1997 to clearly designate the organization as a charitable
organization under Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3).43 Ex. 897. According to this association’s
Form 990-EZ for 199844 the President of the association is Erwyn Glanz. Ex. 898. Glanz is a
Deputy Sheriff for Hartford County. The Vice-President is Clark King. Ex. 898. The Secretary is
Carolyn Carey. Ex. 898. The Treasurer is Mary Lou Kupchunos. Ex. 898. Mary Lou Kupchunos
is the wife of Sheriff Walter Kupchunos.
Since the Hartford County Sheriff’s Department Community Charities Association, Inc.
has sought to quash the subpoena issued to its President to produce records we have not been
able to analyze information concerning this entity. However, our investigation is ongoing as to
this entity..
4. Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc.
The Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. is organized as a charity. This
association actually functions as a charity.
(1) Organizational History.
The Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. was incorporated in April 1979 as a
Connecticut nonstock corporation. Ex. 221. Its certificate of incorporation was amended in April
51
44 This document is publicly available through an organization that posts information concerning charities on the
Internet at http://www.guidestar.org. This specific document may be retrieved from the Internet at the following
address: http://pdf.guidestar.org/1998/061/438/1998-061438201-1-z.pdf
43 Organizations which have been approved by the Internal Revenue Service as charitable organizations pursuant to
Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) are listed in IRS Publication 78, which is also searchable on the internet at
http://www.irs.gov/search/eosearch.html. The Hartford County Sheriff’s Department Community Charities
Association, Inc. does appear on this list.
1984, to clearly establish this organization as a charitable organization under Internal Revenue
Code § 501(c)(3).45 46 Ex. 222.
In 1996 and 1997, Edward J. Stachura was the President of this association. Ex. 223, Ex.
224. Stuart E. Woods was a Vice-President. Ex. 223, Ex. 224. Woods is a Deputy Sheriff for
Middlesex. Thomas Colwell was also a Vice-President. Ex. 223, Ex. 224. William H. Mann was
Treasurer. Ex. 223, Ex. 224. Mann is a Special Deputy Sheriff for Middlesex. Joseph F. Piatti was
Secretary. Ex. 223, Ex. 224. Piatti is a Special Deputy Sheriff for Middlesex.
In 1998, 1999 and 2000, Stuart E. Woods was the President of the Middlesex County
Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. Ex. 225, Ex. 226, Ex. 227. Woods is a Deputy Sheriff for Middlesex.
Piatti remained Secretary. Ex. 225, Ex. 226, Ex. 227. Joseph Blancato became Treasurer in 2000.
Ex. 227. Blancato is a Deputy Sheriff for Middlesex.
During most of 2000, Woods remained President. Ex. 227. Piatti remained Secretary. Ex.
227. Blancato remained Treasurer. Ex. 227. Later in 2000 Joseph Passanesi became President.
S-129, p. 13. Passanesi is a Deputy Sheriff for Middlesex.
The periodic filings with the Secretary of the State for the Middlesex County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. since 1996 consistently show its principal place of business to be One Court
Street in Middletown. Ex. 223, 224, 225, 226, 227. This location is the Superior Court for the
Judicial District of Middlesex. In fact, the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. holds
many of its meetings at the courthouse. Ex. 558, Ex. 563, Ex. 564, Ex. 566, Ex. 567, Ex. 570,
Ex. 571.
Custom and accepted practice preclude the use of a courthouse for purposes other than
official state functions associated with the administration of justice. A private organization, such
as the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. would normally be barred from using a
courthouse as its address.
(2) Funds of the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. Are In
Fact Used for Charitable Purposes.
Almost every meeting of the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc., whether a
board meeting or a meeting of the membership, involves some discussion of charitable efforts,
including several charity balls, a charity golf tournament, sponsoring trips to ball games for
children in hospitals, donations to Special Olympics, or other charitable donations. Ex. 558, Ex.
559, Ex. 560, Ex. 560, Ex. 561, Ex. 562, Ex. 563, Ex. 564, Ex. 565, Ex. 566, Ex. 567, Ex. 568,
Ex. 569, Ex. 570, Ex. 571, Ex. 572, Ex. 573, Ex. 574, Ex. 576, Ex. 577, Ex. 578. The financial
52
46 In addition, organizations which solicit for charitable purposes in Connecticut are required to register with the
Department of Consumer Protection, or claim an exemption from such registration. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 21a-175 et
seq. This organization has not done so.
45 Organizations which have been approved by the Internal Revenue Service as charitable organizations pursuant to
Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) are listed in IRS Publication 78, which is also searchable on the internet at
http://www.irs.gov/search/eosearch.html. While the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. is clearly
organized for charitable purposes, it does not appear on this list.
records of the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. show plainly that its primary purposes
is charitable.
Financial records for the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. show that a total of
$44,793 out of $80,813.80 in revenue, or 55.5% of the revenue, is from charitable donations. Ex.
1146. Adding this amount to this the net profit of special events that are intended to support
charitable activity, yields total of $62,524.80, or 77.4% of the revenue of $80,813.80. Ex. 1146.
A review of the expenses for the Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. also shows
substantial charitable activity. Charitable donations of $39.708.45 added to certificates of deposit
which are actually used for scholarships of $19,520.00 result in a total of $59,228.45, or 80.3% of
the expenses of $73,749.87. Ex. 1146.
(3) Conclusion & Recommendation.
The Middlesex County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. engages in bona fide charitable activities
consistent with its purpose. Inexplicably, this association does not appear on the Internal Revenue
Service list of approved charitable organizations. Since the Middlesex County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. in fact operates as a charity, we further recommend that it apply to the Internal
Revenue Service for tax exempt status under Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3). In addition, this
organization has not registered with the Department of Consumer Protection, or sought
exemption from such registration. Clearly, these actions are legally required.
5. New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is organized as a business league, not as
a charitable organization, distinguishing it from other associations.
(1) Organizational History.
The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. was incorporated in June 1997 as a
Connecticut nonstock corporation.47 The certificate of incorporation shows the initial address for
this organization to be 235 Church Street in New Haven. Ex. 211. This location is the Superior
Court for the Judicial District of New Haven. Additional documents on file with the Secretary of
the State show that the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has consistently referred to
235 Church Street in New Haven as the address of its principal office. Ex. 212, 213, 214, 215.
Membership is limited to Deputy Sheriffs, Special Deputy Sheriffs and Honorary Deputy Sheriffs.
Ex. 496, Art. IV.
In 1997, 1998 and 1999 the President of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
was John Getlein. Ex. 212, Ex. 213, Ex. 214. Getlein is both a Deputy Sheriff and Special Deputy
Sheriff for New Haven. The Vice-President was Peter Criscuolo. Ex. 212, Ex. 213, Ex. 214.
Criscuolo is a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven. The Second Vice-President was Anthony Dirienzo.
53
47 Our review of membership applications indicates that it had an existence of some sort prior to being
incorporated. However, our investigation did not focus on the more distant past.
Ex. 212, Ex. 213, Ex. 214. Dirienzo is a Special Deputy Sheriff Major for New Haven. During
1997 and 1998 the Treasurer was Donald R. Creller. Ex. 212, Ex. 213. Creller is a Deputy Sheriff
for New Haven. The Deputy Treasurer was Maureen Merkle. Ex. 212, Ex. 213. Merkle is a
Special Deputy Sheriff Captain for New Haven. The Sergeant at Arms was Norris H. Horton II.
Ex. 212, Ex. 213. Horton is a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven. The Secretary was George J.
Amato, Jr. Ex. 212, Ex. 213. Amato is a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven.
The officers of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. changed in 2000.
William Nolan became the President. Ex. 215. Nolan is a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven. Timothy
Wall became Vice-President. Ex. 215. Timothy Wall is a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven. Maureen
Merkle became Second Vice-President. Ex. 523. Merkle is a Special Deputy Sheriff Captain for
New Haven. Richard Krueger became the Treasurer. Ex. 215. Krueger is a Deputy Sheriff for
New Haven. The Secretary was George J. Amato, Jr. Ex. 523. Amato is a Deputy Sheriff for New
Haven.
The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. was organized as a business league
under Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(6). Ex. 211, Ex. 496.48 As noted above, this is a different
status from a charitable organization under Internal Revenue § 501(c)(3).
Custom and accepted practice preclude the use of a courthouse for purposes other than
official state functions associated with the administration of justice. A private organization, such
as the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc., would normally be barred from using a
courthouse as its address.
(2) Revenue of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
We reviewed records of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. covering the
time period from January 1, 1997 through March 31, 2000. At the beginning of this time period
the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. had $381,752.82 on hand in several bank
accounts. Ex. 1147. During this time period the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
received additional revenue of $225,125.31. Ex. 1147. Insurance premiums accounted for
$133,739.00, or 59.4% of this revenue. Ex. 1147. Dues accounted for $90,091.00, or 40.0% of
this revenue. Ex. 1147.
The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. raises funds in part from its
membership. The Bylaws call for monthly dues from Deputy Sheriffs in the amount of $10.00,
monthly dues from Special Deputy Sheriffs in the amount of $10.00, and annual dues from
Honorary Deputy Sheriffs in the amount of $50, with the Board of Directors authorized to change
these amounts. Ex. 496, Art. IV(A). The actual initial membership fee for honorary members is
$75, which includes annual membership in the association as well as the National Sheriffs’
Association (including a publication from the National Sheriffs’ Association and a $3000
accidental death policy). The actual renewal fee for honorary members is $50. Ex. R1. This
54
48 Organizations which have been approved by the Internal Revenue Service as charitable organizations pursuant to
Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) are listed in IRS Publication 78, which is also searchable on the internal at
http://www.irs.gov/search/eosearch.html. The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. does not appear on
this list.
association also permits its Board of Directors to impose special assessments to be paid by all
Deputy Sheriffs, Special Deputy Sheriffs and Honorary Deputy Sheriffs. Ex. 496, Art. IV(B).
(3) Expenses of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
(a) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Subsidizes
Some Expenses of the Sheriff, Chief Deputy Sheriff, and
Certain of its Members.
One of the major functions of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. appears to
be providing liability insurance for its members. Ex. 1147. Expenses for insurance premiums
accounts for $147,961.00 out of $366,683.73, or 40.4% of the expenses during the period that
we reviewed. Ex. 1147. An additional $13,250.00 for insurance deductibles accounted for an
additional 3.6% of the expenses. Ex. 1147.
The minutes of a meeting of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for May 28,
1998 note an assessment of each Deputy Sheriff of $100 for a special insurance fund. Ex. 509.
The minutes of a meeting of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for June 11, 1998
note approval of a motion that the civil process Deputy Sheriffs be self insured. Ex. 511. The
minutes of a meeting for June 22, 1998 refer to an assessment on civil process Deputy Sheriffs of
$100 for a “Trailer Policy”. Ex. 512. The minutes of a meeting for June 15, 1999 refer to an
assessment on Deputy Sheriffs for $800 for insurance and membership in the National Sheriffs
Association. Ex. 521.
While it is clear from the records of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. that
the Deputy Sheriffs are assessed for liability insurance costs, there is no record of the Sheriff or
Chief Deputy Sheriff paying anything for liability insurance. For example, in 1996 and 1997, the
names of Sheriff Henry Healey and Chief Deputy Sheriff [later Sheriff] Frank Kinney do not
appear on the list maintained by the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. of Deputy
Sheriffs who paid for liability insurance. Ex. 934. In 1998 and 1999, the names of Sheriff Frank
Kinney and Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty do not appear on the list maintained by the
New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. of Deputy Sheriffs who paid for liability insurance.
Ex. 935. Our review of financial records of Sheriff Kinney and Chief Deputy Sheriff Jannetty do
not show either of them paying for liability insurance for the period that either of them was Sheriff
or Chief Deputy Sheriff.. We are concerned about the New Haven County Sheriffs Association,
Inc., as a tax exempt entity, providing this personal benefit to the Sheriff and Chief Deputy
Sheriff.
While Deputy Sheriffs and some Special Deputy Sheriffs pay dues in order to receive all of
the benefits of membership, there is no record of the Sheriff or Chief Deputy Sheriff paying any
membership dues. For example, in 1997, the names of Sheriff Henry Healey and Chief Deputy
Sheriff [later Sheriff] Frank Kinney do not appear on the list maintained by the New Haven
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. of Deputy Sheriffs who paid dues.49 Ex. 936. In 1998, 1999 and
55
49 The name of Domenic Jannetty appears, but only shows dues payments until he became Chief Deputy Sheriff.
Ex. 936.
2000, the names of Sheriff Frank Kinney and Chief Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty do not
appear on the lists maintained by the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. of Deputy
Sheriffs who paid for dues. Ex. 937; Ex. 938; Ex. 939. Our review of financial records of Sheriff
Kinney and Chief Deputy Sheriff Jannetty do not show either of them paying for dues in the New
Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for this period. Hence, the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc., as a tax exempt entity, provides this personal benefit to the Sheriff and Chief
Deputy Sheriff.
The provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-46 prohibit a Sheriff from receiving or demanding
a benefit from a Deputy Sheriff. The fact that the Sheriff receives benefits which are in fact paid
for by the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc., an association largely supported by dues
and other payments by Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs, appears to be a benefit that
the Sheriff is receiving from Deputy Sheriffs in violation of the statute.
(b) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Has Paid
Legal Bills for Deputy Sheriffs Charged With Crimes.
The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. apparently paid for legal counsel for
three Deputy Sheriffs who had been arrested and against whom criminal charges were brought.50
The minutes of an April 6, 1998 meeting of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association show a
motion approved to “support the three Sheriff’s in their criminal action pending and we give them
the financial support in the way of a loan as needed.” Ex. 508. The minutes of a February 11,
1999 meeting of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show authorization to pay
$12,500 for the attorneys’ bills, and that they would “be responsible for the re-payment to the
Association.” Ex. 517. There were three separate bills for attorneys’ fees from the attorneys for
each of the three Deputy Sheriffs.51 Ex. 930; Ex. 931; Ex. 932. Each of the bills was paid in full by
checks from the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.52 Ex. 933. Our review of financial
records for the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. does not show any repayment by
these three Deputy Sheriffs to the association, even though the authorizations clearly indicate that
the support was a “loan” and that the three Deputy Sheriffs are responsible for repayment.
(c) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Subsidizes
Convention Expenses for Specific Individuals.
The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has subsidized the expenses for some of
its members to attend conventions of the National Sheriffs Association. These subsidies have been
routinely provided for several years.
The Bylaws of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. authorize subsidies of
$1000 for delegates to the annual National Sheriffs Association convention for the Chief Deputy
56
52 Each of the checks includes the signature of Sheriff Frank Kinney. Ex. 933.
51 One of these three bills was addressed to “Sheriff’s Department, Attention High Sheriff Frank Kinney”. Ex. 932.
Another was addressed to “Dominic Jannetty, Chief Deputy Sheriff”. Ex. 930.
50 The criminal charges brought against these three Deputy Sheriffs were ultimately dismissed. Ex. 1135; Ex. 1136;
Ex. 1137.
Sheriff, one delegate chosen from the Board of Directors, and one additional delegate who is a
Deputy Sheriff or Special Deputy Sheriff chosen by the Board of Directors. Ex. 496, Art. XII.
Financial statements attached to the minutes of an August 18, 1997 meeting of the New
Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. indicated that Deputy Sheriff Domenic Jannetty and
Deputy Sheriff Jack Getlein each received $1000 for the National Sheriffs Association
convention. Ex. 501. Checks were in fact provided to each of them for $1000. Ex. 1127; Ex.
1128.
The New Haven County Sheriff Association, Inc. paid $853 for 7 rooms for the 1998
National Sheriffs Association convention. The check was drawn from the association’s outing
account. Ex. 1129. Also in 1998 Deputy Sheriff Jack Getlein, Deputy Sheriff John Burgarella and
Deputy Sheriff Peter Criscuolo each received checks for $1000 for the National Sheriffs
Association convention. Ex. 1130; Ex. 1131; Ex. 1132. The minutes of a November 24, 1997
meeting of the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. indicate that a deposit of $119 was
to be deducted against the allotment for the subsidized delegates to the 1998 National Sheriff
Association convention. Ex. 505. However, from examining the checks it is clear that there was
no such deduction.
There were also subsidies to the 1999 National Sheriffs Association convention. In 1999
Deputy Sheriff John Burgarella and Deputy Sheriff Jack Getlein each received checks for $1000
for the National Sheriffs Association convention. Ex. 1133.
(d) The New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Makes
Payments for Lobbying.
The New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. paid lobbying expenses for the past
few years. None of its expenditures appear on any of the financial statements filed with the Ethics
Commission concerning sheriff lobbying. The lobbying expenses of the New Haven County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. are consistently paid to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association.
Meeting minutes for the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for a meeting on
February 18, 1997 authorized the payment in the range of $3,000 for “our share” of the lobbying
expense. Ex. 498. Two checks were issued on August 7, 1997 by the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association, one for $500 and one for $3900.
Ex. 794, Ex. 795, Ex. 798. Meeting minutes for the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
for a meeting on February 11, 1999 authorize repaying Sheriff Kinney for the $4000 paid to the
lobbyist for the 1998 session. Ex. 517. Sheriff Kinney wrote a check to the Connecticut State
Sheriffs’ Association on May 28, 1998 for $4000. Ex. 799. The New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. reimbursed Sheriff Kinney by check for $4000 dated February 16, 1999. Ex.
796. Meeting minutes for the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for a meeting on June
15, 1999 show Sheriff Kinney discussing work of the lobbyist and obtaining authorization to pay
up to $4,500 for the lobbyist fee. Ex. 521. Minutes for the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. for a meeting on January 17, 2000 authorize a payment of $4000 for the New
Haven County share of the lobbyist contract with Gary Hale and Stephen Duffy. Ex. 527. In fact
57
the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. issued a check, dated January 20, 2000, to the
Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association for $4200. Ex. 797, Ex. 800.
(4) Summary & Referral to Department of Revenue Services.
Based upon evidence and information concerning the New Haven County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. possible misuse of its tax exempt status, we are referring these issues to the
Department of Revenue Services, as well as continuing our inquiry.
6. Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
The Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is organized as a nonprofit corporation.
This association actually functions as a nonprofit organization.
(1) Organizational History.
The Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc. was incorporated in October 1991 as a
Connecticut nonstock corporation. The certificate of incorporation makes no provision regarding
its charitable status.53 Ex. 228. The Bylaws of the Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc. state
its purpose “to engender a spirit of camaraderie among all deputy sheriffs and special deputy
sheriffs and to support the professional development of all members as well as to establish good
will and understanding between the sheriffs department and the citizens of Tolland County.” Ex.
493, Ex. 494. Membership is voluntary, but only Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs are
eligible. Ex. 493, Ex. 494.
In 1997 and 1998, Henry J. Dadalt was the President of the Tolland County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. Ex. 229, Ex. 230. Dadalt is a Special Deputy Sheriff for Tolland. Michael Pio
was the Vice-President. Ex, 229, Ex. 230. Pio is a Special Deputy Sheriff Captain for Tolland.
Dennis Haberman was the Treasurer. Ex. 229, Ex. 230. Haberman is a Special Deputy Sheriff for
Tolland. Tim Poloski was Secretary. Ex. 229, Ex. 230. Poloski is a Deputy Sheriff for Tolland.
Also, in 1998 Jean Bevins was Assistant Secretary. Ex. 230. Bevins is a Special Deputy Sheriff
for Tolland.
In 1999, Vic Perry, Jr. was the President of the Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
Ex. 231. Perry is a Deputy Sheriff for Tolland. Joseph Nedwied was Vice-President. Ex. 231.
Nedwied was a Deputy Sheriff for Tolland. Steve Ciarcia was Treasurer. Ex. 231. Ciarcia is a
Deputy Sheriff for Tolland.
The periodic filings with the Secretary of the State for the Tolland County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. since 1997 consistently show its principal place of business to be 20 Park Street
in Rockville. Ex. 229, 230, 231. This location is the Superior Court Criminal Courthouse for the
Judicial District of Tolland.
58
53 Organizations which have been approved by the Internal Revenue Service as charitable organizations pursuant to
Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) are listed in IRS Publication 78, which is also searchable on the internal at
http://www.irs.gov/search/eosearch.html. The Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc. does not appear on this
list.
Custom and accepted practice preclude the use of a courthouse for purposes other than
official state functions associated with the administration of justice. A private organization, such
as the Tolland County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc., would normally be barred from using a
courthouse as its address.
(2) Utilization of Funds.
A review of the income and expenses of the Tolland County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for
the period from January 1997 through March 2000 showed total income of $72,245.87 and total
expenditures of $67,440.81. Ex. 1148. Adding expenses of $6,101.25 for charitable donations,
$5,216.44 for certificates of deposit used for scholarships, $15,500.84 for a raffle and $15,933.49
for a golf tournament results in a total of $42,752.02, or 63.3% of its activity devoted to activities
that are consistent with a tax exempt organization. Ex. 1148.
Some expenditures would be questionable in a tax exempt organization. For example,
there are relatively small expenditures for a lobbyist and for political contributions. Ex. 1148.
(3) Summary & Recommendation.
The Tolland County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. engages in some activities which are
consistent with tax exempt purposes under the Internal Revenue Code. Accordingly, we
recommend that this association consider a type of tax exempt status under the Internal Revenue
Code and implement this decision. As a tax exempt organization it will need to be careful to
ensure that it does not spend money for inappropriate purposes.
7. Windham County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
The Windham County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is organized and actually functions as a
nonprofit corporation.
(1) Organizational History.
The Sheriff’s Association of Windham County, Inc. was incorporated in September 1995
as a Connecticut nonstock corporation. The certificate of incorporation states that no portion of
its income or assets should be distributable to its members, directors or officers.54 Ex. 232. In
September 1998 the Certificate of Incorporation was amended to change its name to Windham
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex. 235. The Bylaws for the Windham County Sheriffs
Association, Inc., among other things, call for it to further relations between sheriffs and the
community, participate in community affairs and charitable endeavors. Ex. 810.
In 1998 David Page was President of the Windham County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex.
234. Page is a Deputy Sheriff for Windham. Ronald Peter was Vice-President. Peter is a Special
59
54 Organizations which have been approved by the Internal Revenue Service as charitable organizations pursuant to
Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) are listed in IRS Publication 78, which is also searchable on the internal at
http://www.irs.gov/search/eosearch.html. The Windham County Sheriffs Association, Inc. does not appear on
this list.
IV. PERSONAL PURCHASES BY DEPUTY SHERIFFS OR SPECIAL
DEPUTY SHERIFFS WITHOUT PAYING SALES TAX.
w The New London County Sheriff Department improperly authorized Deputy
Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to make personal purchases of items using a
state sales and use tax exemption number.
Deputy Sheriff for Windham. Gloria Marion was Secretary. Ex. 234. Marion is a Special Deputy
Sheriff for Windham. Arthur Johnston was Treasurer. Ex. 234. Johnston is a Deputy Sheriff for
Windham. James Allard was Sergeant at Arms. Ex. 234. Allard is a Special Deputy Sheriff for
Windham.
Page remained President in 1999. Ex. 236. Russell Downer became Vice-President. Ex.
236. Downer is a Special Deputy Sheriff for Windham. J. Michael Murphy became Treasurer. Ex.
236. Murphy is a Special Deputy Sheriff for Windham. Todd Tremblay became Sergeant at Arms.
Ex. 236. Tremblay is a Special Deputy Sheriff for Windham.
The periodic filings with the Secretary of the State for the Windham County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. have shown different principal places of business. When the corporation was
first established in 1975 the principal place of business was 155 Church Street in Putnam. Ex. 233.
In 1998 and 1999 the principal place of business was shown as 79 Lewiston Avenue in
Willimantic. Ex. 234; Ex. 236.
(2) The Windam County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. Has Had Minimal
Activity.
We reviewed records for the period from January 1997 through April 2000. During this
time the Windham County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. had minimal activity, with total income of
$6,143.00 and total expenses of $5,534.80. Ex. 1149. Its income and expenses, minimal in
amount, seem to raise no relevant issues at this point.
(3) Summary & Recommendation.
The Windham County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. appears to have purposes consistent with
tax exempt purposes under the Internal Revenue Code. Accordingly, it may wish to apply for such
tax exempt status.
C. REFERRAL TO DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE SERVICES.
There is sufficient evidence that the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. and New
Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. have misused their tax-exempt status to warrant review
by the Department of Revenue Services. We stand ready to provide advice and assist with
whatever further action it deems appropriate.
60
w The sales and use tax exemption number provided in the authorizations by the
New London County Sheriff Department simply does not exist.
w New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan has failed to account for all of the
authorizations which may have been provided to make personal purchases of
items without paying state sales tax.
A. AUTHORIZATIONS TO USE TAX EXEMPTION NUMBER IN NEW LONDON COUNTY.
A letter on New London Sheriff Egan’s official letterhead was provided to a vendor
authorizing some Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to make personal purchases of duty
weapons “using the Sheriffs Department tax exemption #06730435K”. Ex. R33; Ex. 106855.
Another similar letter, dated September 13, 1995, authorizes the use of the same tax exempt
number for the purchase of ammunition. Ex. 209. There is also a memorandum on letterhead
belonging to a defunct sheriff association in New London County which authorizes the use of the
same tax exempt number for purchases at Gall’s, Inc., a police supply house. The memorandum to
Gall’s, Inc. is dated February 7, 1996 and includes the signature of Sheriff Gerard Egan. Ex. 210.
We have attempted to get information from Sheriff Gerard Egan and the New London
County Sheriff Department to identify, among other things, all such authorizations concerning use
of a tax exemption number for personal purchases. During the course of the investigation this
information was the subject of subpoenas issued on June 1, 2000. Ex. 342, 343. When Sheriff
Egan produced limited information it did not explain who was given such authorizations. We
sought additional information, following the subpoena by letter dated June 16, 2000, giving
Sheriff Egan a sample of the authorizations that we were seeking. Ex. 344. We received a
response from Sheriff Egan on June 22, 2000 along with three sample letters. Ex. 345. That
response did not include all such authorizations that were provided. Accordingly, we followed up
again on June 28, 2000. Ex. 346. The response was a short letter from Sheriff Egan, dated July 6,
2000, essentially restating his previous letter and a longer letter, dated July 28, 2000, which,
among other things, claimed that records were improperly removed from his office, and that a
subordinate of his told him it was acceptable to use the number. Ex. 347, 348. We sent another
letter, dated August 2, 2000, specifically requesting that Sheriff Egan a list of the individuals
receiving authorizations, as well as certain additional information, and what he did to ascertain the
appropriateness of using the number. Ex. 349. By letter dated August 14, 2000, Sheriff Egan
indicated: “I have provided all written information that is in my possession.” He also noted that he
was provided the number by a former manager in the Office of the County Sheriffs. Ex. 350.
However, he has still not accounted for all such authorizations that he or Chief Deputy Sheriff
Thomas Connors may have given.
61
55 The version of this letter that we marked as Ex. 1068 makes reference to an “attached list” of Special Deputy
Sheriffs who were authorized to use it. The “attached list” was not actually attached to the copy of the letter that we
obtained.
V. CAMPAIGN FINANCE.
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. made illegal campaign
contributions, including a $1000 contribution to the Valentino for High Sheriff
campaign.
B. THE TAX AUTHORIZATION NUMBER USED IN NEW LONDON COUNTY DOES NOT
EXIST.
In 1987, the Office of the County Sheriffs circulated a letter indicating that it and the
Sheriffs’ Advisory Board were exempt from sale and use taxes as a state agency. This letter
identified the tax exemption number as “06-730435K”. Ex. 1115. This is the same tax exemption
number as that used by New London County Sheriff Gerard Egan. Ex. R33; Ex. 209; Ex. 1068.
We asked the Department of Revenue Services about the status of this tax exemption
number and were informed that it does not exist and has never existed. Ex. X1224. Neither the
Office of the County Sheriffs nor Sheriff Gerard Egan should have used a nonexistent tax
exemption number.
C. GOVERNMENT TAX EXEMPT STATUS WAS USED FOR PERSONAL PURCHASES.
Documents show that personal purchases were made using the putative tax exemption
number for the New London County Sheriff Department. These include purchases of duty
weapons, ammunition, and supplies from a police supply house. Ex. R33; Ex. 209; Ex. 210;
Ex. 1068.
D. REFERRAL TO DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE SERVICES.
Use of an invalid tax exemption number — and for personal purchases — may well have
violated Connecticut tax laws. Accordingly, we are referring the above concerns to the
Department of Revenue Services for review, as well as continuing our inquiry. We stand ready to
provide advice and assist with whatever further action it deems appropriate.
E. CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS.
Authorizing anyone to make personal purchases of anything without paying sales tax,
using nonexistent tax exemption numbers, is improper and potentially illegal. Since such
authorizations were in fact provided, the Sheriff should account for allowing them. Further, the
Sheriff should research and identify all purchases that were actually made with such
authorizations, and all persons who made any purchases without actually paying the sales tax due
the State should pay such sales tax now, along with whatever interest and penalties are
appropriate.
62
w The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. inappropriately used its own
resources to establish a political action committee.
w The political action committee formed by the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. was misused in billing for security services provided by Fairfield
County Sheriff Charles Valentino, along with several Deputy Sheriffs and Special
Deputy Sheriffs at the Fairfield University Commencement.
w Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs contribute most of the funds which
are used in the political campaigns for Sheriff elections.
A. ILLEGAL CONTRIBUTIONS.
1. Illegal Contribution to Valentino for High Sheriff Campaign.
The Valentino for High Sheriff campaign committee received a contribution of $1000
from the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.56 Ex. 539. This check is dated September 15,
1998. Ex. 539. It appears on the campaign finance statement for the campaign committee for this
time period. Ex. 358. Since the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is not registered as a
Political Action Committee, it was illegal for the Valentino for High Sheriff campaign committee
to receive this contribution. Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 9-333o, 9-333p.
2. Illegal Contributions by Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.57
Certain conduct of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. appears to violate
Connecticut campaign finance laws, as summarized here:58
63
58 The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. also appears to have been directly involved in the political process
of screening candidates for Sheriff, an elected office. Minutes of the March 25, 1997 meeting of the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show that it formed a Screening Committee for candidates for Sheriff. Ex. 180.
Minutes of the November 18, 1997 meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show that it received
four applications for Sheriff, planned to report on candidates who refused to fill out applications, and was doing
background checks on the candidates. Ex. 185. Since the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. was not
registered as a Political Action Committee it should not have played any role in the process by which a candidate
for an elected office was chosen.
57 The organizational history of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is described in the portion of this
report describing sheriff associations.
56 This contribution was made on September 15, 1998, being a date prior to the general election. Ex. 359. This
means that the Valentino for High Sheriff campaign had full use of these funds during the election campaign. On
February 17, 1999, well after the general election at which Valentino was elected, the Valentino for High Sheriff
campaign made a $1000 payment, corresponding to these funds, to “Connecticut General Fund c/o Campaign
Enforcement Div.” Ex. 366.
(1) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Made an Illegal
Contribution to the Valentino for High Sheriff Campaign
Committee.
As noted above, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. made a $1000 contribution
to the Valentino for High Sheriff campaign committee. Ex. 539. In addition, the sum of $300 was
contributed to Connecticut Republicans.59 Ex. 548. Since the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. is not registered as a Political Action Committee, it was illegal for the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. to make these contributions. Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 9-333o,
9-333p.
(2) The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Inappropriately Used
Its Own Resources To Establish A Political Action Committee.
The minutes of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show that the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. had a role in forming a political action committee (“PAC”). In
fact, at the association meeting on November 16, there was a vote to authorize $1,500 to serve as
seed money for a PAC. Ex. 204. The authorization called for reimbursement of the $1,500 by the
PAC once it was formed. Ex. 204. A check in this amount was in fact paid to the attorney who
performed legal work associated with forming the PAC. Ex. 530. There was additional discussion
at the association meeting on March 21, 2000 of when this $1,500 would be paid back to the
association. Ex. 208.
A PAC named “Fairfield County Sheriffs Political Action League” was in fact organized in
October 1999. Ex. 457, Ex. 458. This PAC was organized prior to the meeting of the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. at which its formation was authorized. Ex. 457, Ex. 458. The
cover letter to the Secretary of the State was dated October 26, 1999. Ex. 459. The check for
$1,500 to an attorney to organize this PAC was dated November 1, 1999, also prior to the date
that this expense from the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. was authorized. Ex. 531.
The amount of the check corresponds to the amount of the bill from the attorney for forming this
PAC. Ex. 530. None of the financial statements required to be filed with the Secretary of the State
were submitted time. Ex. 460, Ex. 462, Ex. 464. The financial statements on file with the
Secretary of the State show no receipts or expenditures of any sort for this PAC. Ex. 461,
Ex. 463, Ex. 465.
The PAC’s statement of organization indicated that it planned to use the Patriot National
Bank in Stamford. Ex. 457. Patriot National Bank has no record of any such account. Ex. 1089.
The documentary evidence shows that the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. used
its own resources to establish a political action committee. This was simply not appropriate.
64
59 We note that the Connecticut Republicans immediately noted that the check came from an inappropriate source
and promptly returned it. Ex. 549. The Connecticut Republicans acted properly by returning the check and has no
responsibility for the actions of the Fairfield County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc.
B. THE POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE STATUS OF THE FAIRFIELD COUNTY
SHERIFFS POLITICAL ACTION LEAGUE WAS MISUSED.
An improper payment may have been made where Fairfield County Sheriff Charles
Valentino arranged for himself along with several Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to
provide security services for the Commencement at Fairfield University.60 All of them were in
uniform. S-144, pp. 23 -30. Fairfield University paid the Fairfield County Sheriffs Department the
sum of $1200 for the services performed by the sheriffs at Commencement. Ex. 750.
The bill for these services was on a form from the Fairfield County Sheriff Dept. PAC, or
political action committee.61 Ex. 750. The bill was paid by a representative of Fairfield University
personally handing the check to Sheriff Valentino. S-144, p. 35. Valentino then gave the check to
Deputy Sheriff Rafael Segarra, in the presence of the Fairfield University representative. S-144, p.
36. Segarra is the Treasurer of the PAC. Ex. 457, Ex. 458. The bill for the services was from the
PAC and Segarra’s name was actually listed on the bill as the Treasurer of the PAC. Ex. 750.
The check provided to Sheriff Valentino which he then turned over to Segarra does not
appear on any of the financial reports of the PAC. Ex. 461, Ex. 463, Ex. 465. Moreover, the
services performed for Fairfield University by the Sheriff, some Deputy Sheriffs, and some Special
Deputy Sheriffs, do not appear as in-kind contributions on the financial reports of the PAC. Ex.
461, Ex. 463, Ex. 465. The check does appear to have been deposited by the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. The check was actually issued to “Fairfield County Sheriffs Dept”. Ex.
751, Ex. 752. The endorsement includes the number “0100308023” and the initials “FCSA”. Ex.
752. The number corresponds to the same account belonging to the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. that was drawn on for the illegal contribution to the Valentino for High Sheriff
campaign. Ex. 539.
Why would a PAC be billing for security services performed by sheriffs, especially
uniformed sheriffs? Why would a check generated following a bill by the PAC would actually get
deposited in an account of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. without any reporting of
the transaction in the PAC’s financial reports?
C. SHERIFF SUBORDINATES ARE THE MAJOR CONTRIBUTORS TO SHERIFF
CAMPAIGNS AND POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEES ASSOCIATED WITH SHERIFFS.
We reviewed the campaign finance reports filed with the Secretary of the State in
connection with the last general election for Sheriff and for all of the political action committees
associated with Sheriffs. We found a very high proportion of contributors who were Deputy
Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs, or their family members.62 Ex. 1188.
65
62 We compared the campaign finance reports with lists of all Sheriffs, Deputy Sheriffs and Chief Deputy Sheriffs.
We also included all contributions from individuals who had the same last name and were shown at the same
address as a Sheriff, Deputy Sheriff or Special Deputy Sheriff. In addition, if the campaign finance report itself
showed an individual as a sheriff that was included.
61 This PAC that was formed with resources from the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc., as described
above.
60 This is described in greater depth in the portion of this report which documents extra duty security services.
1. Fairfield County.
The Valentino for Sheriff campaign had total contributions of $91,866.95. Ex. 369. Of
that sum $72,808.00, or 79.25%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1194.
2. Hartford County.
The Kupchunos for Sheriff ‘98 campaign had total contributions of $196,021.75. Ex. 456.
Of that sum $76,453.75, or 39%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1191. In
addition, the Friends of Walt Kupchunos political action committee had total contributions of
$6,350.00. Ex. 469. Of that sum $3,490.00, or 54.96%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives.
Ex. 1188; Ex. 1198.
3. Litchfield County.
The People for Sheriff Zaharek campaign had total contributions of $15,446.00. Ex. 392.
Of that sum $7,983.00, or 51.68%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1195.
4. Middlesex County.
The Re-Elect Bibisi 98’ campaign had total contributions of $37,064.00. Ex. 417. Of that
sum $7,800.00, or 21.04%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1189.
5. New Haven County.
The Kinney for Sheriff campaign had total contributions of $219,610.00. Ex. 385. Of that
sum $91,590.00, or 41.71%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1192. In
addition, the Five Star PAC had total contributions of $9,475.00. Ex. 478. Of that sum $4,225, or
44.59%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1197.
6. New London County.
The Egan, Sheriff ‘98 campaign had total contributions of $22,190.18. Ex. 399. Of that
sum $12,255.00, or 55.23%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1190.
7. Tolland County.
The Re-Elect Mike Piccoli campaign had total contributions of $16,415.00. Ex. 406. Of
that sum $11,475.00, or 69.91%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1193.
8. Windham County.
The White ‘98 campaign had total contributions of $13,736.00. Ex. 425. Of that sum
$4,848.00, or 35.29%, came from sheriffs or sheriff relatives. Ex. 1188; Ex. 1196.
66
VI. CODE OF ETHICS FOR LOBBYISTS.
w Although lobbying is the primary function of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association, this association did not report all sources of funds over $2000 as
required by the Code of Ethics for Lobbyists.
w The lobbyist registration and financial reporting forms for the Connecticut State
Sheriffs’ Association were not accurate.
w Although the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has paid lobbying
expenditures exceeding $2000 it has failed to register as a lobbyist under the
Code of Ethics for Lobbyists.
w Although the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has paid lobbying
expenditures exceeding $2000 it has failed to register as a lobbyist under the
Code of Ethics for Lobbyists.
A. LEGAL BACKGROUND.
Under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 1-94 all lobbyists who either receive or agree to receive
compensation of more than $2000 in a calendar year, or who make or incur an obligation to make
an expense of more than $2000 in a calendar year, are required to register with the Ethics
Commission. A “‘Client lobbyist’ means a lobbyist on behalf of whom lobbying takes place and
who makes expenditures for lobbying and in furtherance of lobbying.” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 1-91(u).
A “‘Communicator lobbyists’ means a lobbyist who communicates directly or solicits others to
communicate with an official or his staff in the legislative or executive branch of government or in
a quasi-public agency for the purpose of influencing legislative or administrative action.” Conn.
Gen. Stat. § 1-91(v). The Ethics Commission has issued guidance with respect to registration as a
lobbyist. Ex. 758.
Client lobbyists are required to file financial reports with the Ethics Commission. Conn.
Gen. Stat. § 1-96. If any registrant with the Ethics Commission, such as a client lobbyist, “is
formed primarily for the purpose of lobbying, it shall disclose the name and address of any person
contributing two thousand dollars or more to the registrant’s lobbying activities in any calendar
D. REFERRAL TO ELECTIONS ENFORCEMENT COMMISSION.
The foregoing facts, combined with additional information concerning coercive or
threatening solicitations, strongly suggest the need for further inquiry as to possible violations of
Connecticut campaign finance laws. In particular, the illegal contributions to the Valentino for
Sheriff campaign, contribution to establish the Fairfield County Sheriffs Political Action League,
and misuse of that political action committee may run afoul of applicable law. Accordingly, we
seek involvement of the Elections Enforcement Commission, in a continuing investigation with
our offices for review and to take whatever further action it deems appropriate. We stand ready to
provide advice and assist with whatever further action it deems appropriate.
67
year.” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 1-95(a)(3). In two advisory opinions the Ethics Commission has
construed the phrase “organized primarily for the purpose of lobbying” in a fashion that looks to
the totality of the circumstances surrounding the lobbying activity. Ex. 759, Ex. 760. Thus, if 80%
of a corporation’s total activities are not lobbying related, even if all it does in Connecticut is
lobby, the corporation is not organized primarily for lobbying. Ex. 759. On the other hand, if vast
majority of an entity’s activities are lobbying related and it is registered as a lobbyist in
Connecticut, the provisions of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 1-95(a)(3) apply. Ex. 760.
Communicator lobbyists are also required to file financial reports with the Ethics
Commission. These reports are required to report the amounts of compensation and
reimbursement from each client. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 1-96.
B. CONNECTICUT STATE SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION.63
An entity calling itself the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association is registered with the
Ethics Commission as a client lobbyist. Ex. 761, Ex. 771. We reviewed lobbyist registrations for
1998 through 2000.
1. Lobbyist Registrations & Financial Reporting.
(1) 1998.
The Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association’s 1998 lobbyist registration shows Joseph E.
Bibisi, Sheriff for Middlesex County, as an in-house communicator. Ex. 761. This registration
shows John C. King and Christopher C. Healy as outside communicators. Ex. 761. The portion of
the registration form calling for disclosure of any person contributing $2,000 or more to the
association’s lobbying activities in any calendar year is blank. Ex. 761.
In 1998, the Updike, Kelly & Spellacy Public Affairs Corporation filed a communicator
lobbyist registration showing King & Healy as its members, Ex. 762, corresponding with the
information in the association registration.
The periodic financial reports filed by the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association show
expenditures during 1998 to Joseph Bibisi and Updike, Kelly & Spellacy. Ex. 763 through Ex.
767. Joseph Bibisi’s communicator lobbyist annual report shows the items concerning him.64 Ex.
768. Updike’s communicator lobbyist annual report also shows the items concerning it. Ex. 769.
Updike’s annual report for 1998 shows total payments of $9545.83. Ex. 769. This corresponds to
checks to Updike from the association. Ex. 783, Ex. 784.
68
64 Since the sums involved are very small they are not addressed further here. They are broken down in the exhibits
referred to in the body of this report.
63 The organizational history of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association is described in the portion of this report
describing sheriff associations.
(2) 1999-2000.
The Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association’s 1999-2000 lobbyist registration shows
Joseph E. Bibisi, Sheriff for Middlesex County, as an in-house communicator. Ex. 771. This
registration shows John C. King and Christopher C. Healy as outside communicators. Ex. 771.
The portion of the registration form calling for disclosure of any person contributing $2,000 or
more to the association’s lobbying activities in any calendar year is blank. Ex. 771.
In 1999, the Updike, Kelly & Spellacy Public Affairs Corporation filed a communicator
lobbyist registration showing King & Healy as its members. Ex. 772. This corresponds with the
information in the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association registration.
In 2000, Stephen J. Duffy also filed a communicator lobbyist registration concerning the
Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. Ex. 773. The association did not amend its earlier filing
to show this additional lobbyist.
The periodic financial reports filed by the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association show
expenditures during 1999 and 2000 to Joseph Bibisi and Updike, Kelly & Spellacy. Ex. 774
through Ex. 777. Joseph Bibisi’s communicator lobbyist annual report for 1999 shows the items
concerning him.65 Ex. 778. Updike’s communicator lobbyist annual report for 1999 also shows the
items concerning it. Ex. 779. Updike’s annual report for 1999 shows total payments of
$18,622.64. Ex. 779. The payments shown for 2/99 and 12/99 correspond to checks to Updike
from the association. Ex. 785, 787. However, Updike’s annual report for 1999 shows total
payments for 8/99 of $8211.38. Ex. 779. The corresponding check from the association to
Updike was for $10,000. Ex. 786. This represents $1788.62 to Updike that were not accounted
for in Updike’s annual report for 1999.
There is also an inaccurate period financial report filed by the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association concerning lobbying for it by Stephen J. Duffy for the first quarter of 2000. Ex. 780.
This report was amended by a letter from Duffy. Ex. 781. Duffy also filed a periodic report for the
Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association for the second quarter of 2000. Ex. 782. Duffy’s reports
show total payments to his firm by the association in 2000 of $18,500 as follows: (1) $3,375 on
February 22, 2000; (2) $5,000 on February 29, 2000; (3) $1,750 on March 6, 2000; (4) $3,375 on
March 31, 2000; (5) $2,500 on May 4, 2000; (6) $1,500 on June 9, 2000; and, (7) $1,000 on June
30, 2000. Ex. 781, 782. The payments beginning March 31, 2000 correspond to checks from the
Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association to Duffy. Ex. 790, Ex. 791, Ex. 792, Ex. 793. There were
two earlier checks from the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association to Duffy — January 12, 2000
for $2,650 and March 6, 2000 for $1,675. Ex. 788, Ex. 789. These do not appear to correspond
to any of the payments reported by Duffy. In addition, Duffy received a check, dated January 26,
2000 from the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc., a separate organization, for $5,000. Ex.
556. While the amount corresponds to a payment Duffy reports, the date is one month off. In
addition, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. check resulted from a bill that Duffy sent
to it dated January 20, 2000. Ex. 533.
69
65 Since the sums involved are very small they are not addressed further here. They are broken down in the exhibits
referred to in the body of this report.
(3) Summary.
Material discrepancies appear the financial reporting forms associated with lobbying
activity for the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. In light of our referral to the Ethics
Commission, as noted below, we will work with it in further review of these issues. It is the
subject matter expert in the Code of Ethics for Lobbyists the Ethics Commission, and so is best
qualified to resolve these issues.
2. The Lobbyist Registration Forms For The Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association Do Not Include Required Information Concerning
Contributors To The Association.
The deposits and withdrawals from the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association checking
account at Fleet Bank, which we obtained pursuant to a subpoena, show that during the past few
years the primary purpose of this organization was lobbying.
Our review covered deposits and withdrawals from January 1997 through April 2000.
During that period, $57,243 out of $60,743 in income, or 94.2% of the income of the Connecticut
State Sheriffs’ Association was expressly designated for lobbyist fees.66 Ex. 1141. Our analysis
also shows that $62,017.74 out of $66,340.01, or 93.5% of the expenses of the Connecticut State
Sheriffs’ Association are for lobbying. Ex. 1141.
Since the primary function of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association was lobbying, it
was required to report any person who contributed $2000 or more during any calendar year.
In fact there were several examples of persons who made payments to the Connecticut
State Sheriffs’ Association of greater than $2000. Payments by the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. and New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. of $2000 or more are noted in
discussion below. In addition, on February 24, 2000 the Middlesex County Sheriffs Department
paid a check for $2000. Ex. 1142. Similarly, in 1999 the Tolland County Sheriff’s Department
paid two checks, one for $1235 and one for $1330, for a total of $2565. Ex. 1143; Ex. 1144.
C. FAIRFIELD COUNTY SHERIFFS ASSOCIATION, INC.67
The Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. has made lobbying expenditures for the
past few years. None of its expenditures appear up on any of the financial statements filed with
the Ethics Commission concerning sheriff lobbying.
Until 2000, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. made checks payable to the
Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. In 1997, the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc.
paid $3400 to the Connecticut State Sheriffs Association. Ex. 801. Meeting minutes for the
70
67 The organizational history of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. is described in the portion of this
report describing sheriff associations.
66 Our analysis shows that the remaining $3,500, or 5.8%, of income is received from annual dues. Ex. 1141. If
these dues are also classified as lobbying income, then 100% of the income of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’
Association is for lobbying.
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for a meetings on April 21, 1998 discussed a lobbyist
fee of $3800. Ex. 190. Meeting minutes for a meeting on January 19, 1999 discussed a check for
$3,895. Ex. 196, Ex. 802. In fact, the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association would bill the
Sheriff in the form of an “assessment” for lobbying expenses. Ex. 532. The Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. in fact paid two amounts to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association.
A check (#1040) was dated January 19, 1999 in the amount of $3,895. This was for 1998
expenses. Ex. 532. Another check (#1052A) was dated April 25, 1999 in the amount of $3,895.
Ex. 543, Ex. 803. This was for 1999 expenses. Ex. 532.
In 2000 there was a different lobbyist. The meeting minutes for the January 18, 2000
meeting of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. show that Stephen Duffy, “our
lobbyist”, was at the meeting, represented all of the counties, and would bill the association
directly. Ex. 206. Such a bill for $5000, dated January 20, 2000, was in fact sent to the Fairfield
County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex. 533. It was paid by the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. by check dated January 26, 2000. Ex. 556.
It is noteworthy that the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. had lobbying expenses
for several years in excess of $2000 for each year. However, the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. is not registered with the Ethics Commission as a client lobbyist. Nor do its
expenditures appear on registration forms or financial reports associated with lobbying activities.
D. NEW HAVEN COUNTY SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION, INC.68
The New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. has had lobbying expenditures for the
past few years. None of its expenditures appear on any of the financial statements filed with the
Ethics Commission concerning sheriff lobbying. This association’s lobbying expenses would
always be covered ultimately by the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association.
Meeting minutes for the New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. for a meeting on
February 18, 1997 authorized the payment in the range of $3,000 for “our share” of the lobbying
expense. Ex. 498. Two checks were issued on August 7, 1997 by the New Haven County
Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association, one for $500 and one
for $3900. Ex. 794, Ex. 795, Ex. 798. Meeting minutes for the New Haven County Sheriffs’
Association, Inc. for a meeting on February 11, 1999 authorize repaying Sheriff Kinney for the
$4000 paid to the lobbyist for the 1998 session. Ex. 517. Sheriff Kinney wrote a check, from one
of his own accounts, to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association on May 28, 1998 for $4000.
Ex. 799. The New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. reimbursed Sheriff Kinney by check
for $4000 dated February 16, 1999. Ex. 796. Meeting minutes for the New Haven County
Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. for a meeting on June 15, 1999 show Sheriff Kinney discussing work of
the lobbyist and obtaining authorization to pay up to $4,500 for the lobbyist fee. Ex. 521. Minutes
for the New Haven Association for a meeting on January 17, 2000 authorize a payment of $4000
for the New Haven County share of the lobbyist contract with Gary Hale and Stephen Duffy. Ex.
71
68 The organizational history of the New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. is described in the portion of this
report describing sheriff associations.
VII. USE OF DEPUTY SHERIFFS AND SPECIAL DEPUTY SHERIFFS
FOR EXTRA DUTY SECURITY WORK.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino improperly arranged for uniformed
Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to perform security services at the
Fairfield University Commencement and at a concert sponsored by Fairfield
University. The Sheriff and all Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs
present at such events were in uniform. The Sheriff and some of the Deputy
Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs were armed. Funds that Fairfield University
paid in connection with these events were deposited into accounts of the Fairfield
County Sheriff Association, Inc. and Sheriff Charles Valentino. Extra duty work
by sheriffs should not result in financial benefit to private organizations or
individuals.
527. In fact, the New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. issued a check, dated January 20,
2000, to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association for $4200. Ex. 797, Ex. 800.
It is noteworthy that the New Haven County Sheriffs’ Association, Inc. had lobbying
expenses for several years in excess of $2000 for each year. However, this association is not
registered with the Ethics Commission as a client lobbyist. Nor do its expenditures appear on
registration forms or financial reports associated with lobbying activities.
E. OTHER COUNTIES.
We also reviewed the receipts of the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association from
counties other than Fairfield and New Haven. There are varying practices in the other counties. In
some counties the individual sheriffs pay their lobbyist checks directly to the Connecticut State
Sheriffs’ Association while in others a single check is issued either by a sheriff association or a
check drawn on an account established in the name of an individual sheriff department. Ex. 1141.
In our review we noticed only two other counties that met the $2000 threshold that is
significant for the Code of Ethics for Lobbyists. In 1999, the Middlesex County Sheriffs
Department paid $1900 to the Connecticut State Sheriffs’ Association. Ex. 803. However, in
2000 the Middlesex County Sheriffs Department check was for $2000. Ex. 804. This $2000
expenditure does not appear on registration forms or financial reports associated with lobbying
activities. Similarly, in 1999 the Tolland County Sheriff’s Department paid two checks, one for
$1235 and one for $1330, for a total of $2565. Ex. 1143; Ex. 1144. This $2000 expenditure also
does not appear on registration forms or financial reports associated with lobbying activities.
F. REFERRAL TO ETHICS COMMISSION.
The foregoing facts strongly suggest to us that there may have been violations of the
Connecticut Code of Ethics for Lobbyists. Accordingly, we are referring the above concerns to
the Ethics Commission for review jointly with our offices, and we stand ready to assist it in taking
whatever further action is appropriate.
72
w Fairfield University paid $1200 for the security services at the Commencement.
The bill was from the political action committee formed by the Fairfield County
Sheriff Association, Inc.. The check was made payable to the Fairfield County
Sheriff Department and then deposited into an account belonging to the Fairfield
County Sheriff Association, Inc.
w Fairfield University paid $1500 for the security services at the concert. The bill
was from Sheriff Valentino. This check was made payable to the Fairfield County
Sheriff Department and then deposited into an account belonging to Sheriff
Charles Valentino.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino was deceptive when asked by the
Office of the County Sheriffs to explain what happened at the Fairfield University
events.
w It is highly inappropriate for the Sheriff to arrange for himself, Deputy Sheriffs
and Special Deputy Sheriffs to provide security services as sheriffs for the
financial benefit of a private organization.
In the course of our investigation we learned of occasions where arrangements were made
for a Sheriff, Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs to provide security services outside of a
courthouse. We set forth such instances which have been sufficiently documented to report.
A. FAIRFIELD COUNTY DEPUTY SHERIFFS AND SPECIAL DEPUTY SHERIFFS HAVE
BEEN USED TO PROVIDE SECURITY AT FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY EVENTS IN
EXCHANGE FOR FINANCIAL BENEFIT TO THE FAIRFIELD COUNTY SHERIFFS’
ASSOCIATION, INC.
On two occasions during 2000 sheriffs from Fairfield County were used to assist in
connection with security at events conducted by Fairfield University.
1. Fairfield University Commencement.
The Security Department at Fairfield University arranged with Sheriff Valentino for the
services of several sheriffs at the Commencement on Sunday May 21, 2000. S-144, pp. 9 - 10.
This conversation was confirmed with a letter requesting the service. Ex. 747; S-144, p. 10. There
were further conversations concerning the question of whether the sheriffs involved were covered
by Fairfield University’s insurance. It was determined that if the sheriffs were volunteers they
would be covered by Fairfield University’s insurance. Ex. 748, Ex. 749; S-144, pp. 10 - 12, 18.
That was communicated to Sheriff Valentino. Ex. 749. Fairfield University wanted uniformed
personnel which Sheriff Valentino indicated would be no problem. S-144, p. 12. Although the
individual sheriffs were not to be compensated for this event, there was discussion of a price
which the Fairfield University representative understood to be a donation. S-144, pp. 12 - 15.
73
Special Deputy Sheriffs were solicited at roll call to volunteer to work at the Fairfield
University Commencement. Ex. X1187. A Special Deputy Sheriff who provided us with a sworn
statement indicated that the work was traffic duty in uniform. Ex. X1187.
At the Commencement, sheriffs performed traffic control duties. S-144, pp. 11, 22 - 23,
30. All of the sheriffs who were on duty at the Commencement were in uniform. S-144, p. 18.
Sheriff Valentino was in uniform and was armed with a revolver. S-144, pp. 23, 25. The following
Deputy Sheriffs were present, and in uniform: Chief Deputy Sheriff Robert Magnuson, Deputy
Sheriff Patricia Randall, Deputy Sheriff Rafael Segarra, and Deputy Sheriff Willie Smith. S-144,
pp. 26 - 28. Magnuson was armed. S-144, p. 29. The following Special Deputy Sheriffs were in
attendance: Special Deputy Sheriff Captain Kevin Cahill and Special Deputy Sheriff Kosmas
Kalmanidis. S-144, pp. 27 - 28. Kalmanidis was armed with a semiautomatic pistol. S-144, pp. 28
- 29. There were a total of 18 sheriffs present at this event. S-144, pp. 23, 25. Some additional
sheriffs who were present could not be specifically identified by a Fairfield University
representative. S-144, p. 28. One of the additional uniformed sheriffs was armed with a
semiautomatic pistol in a holster made for a revolver.69 S-144, p. 30. In total, 18 sheriffs assisted
at Fairfield University’s Commencement. All were in uniform, and some were armed.
Fairfield University paid the Fairfield County Sheriffs Department the sum of $1200 for
the services performed by the sheriffs at Commencement. Ex. 750. Interestingly, the bill for these
services was on a form from the Fairfield County Sheriff Dept. PAC, or political action
committee. Ex. 750. It seems very odd to us that a political action committee would be billing for
security services performed by sheriffs, especially uniformed sheriffs. The check was actually
issued to “Fairfield County Sheriffs Dept”. Ex. 751, Ex. 752. The endorsement includes the
number “0100308023” and the initials “FCSA”. Ex. 752. to the same account belonging to the
Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. that was drawn on for the illegal contribution to the
Valentino for High Sheriff campaign. Ex. 539.
The check provided to Sheriff Valentino which he then turned over to Segarra does not
appear on any of the financial reports of the PAC. Ex. 461, Ex. 463, Ex. 465. Moreover, the
services performed for Fairfield University by the Sheriff, some Deputy Sheriffs, and some Special
Deputy Sheriffs, do not appear as in-kind contributions on the financial reports of the PAC. Ex.
461, Ex. 463, Ex. 465. The check does appear to have been deposited by the Fairfield County
Sheriffs Association, Inc. The check was actually issued to “Fairfield County Sheriffs Dept”. Ex.
751, Ex. 752. The endorsement includes the number “0100308023” and the initials “FCSA”. Ex.
752. The number corresponds to the same account belonging to the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. that was drawn on for the illegal contribution to the Valentino for High Sheriff
campaign. Ex. 539.
74
69 This is of concern since semiautomatic handguns do not properly fit in holsters designed for revolvers, and vice
versa. This in itself creates a significant safety hazard to both the individual wearing the weapon as well as the
general public.
2. Fairfield University Concert.
A few weeks after the Commencement, arrangements were made to use sheriffs at a
concert sponsored by Fairfield University. The concert was to be held on June 24, 2000. These
arrangements were also made with Sheriff Valentino. S-144, pp. 37 - 39. Sheriff Valentino
mentioned that this time the sheriffs would have to be compensated. S-144, p. 38. An agreement
was made to pay $1500 for sheriff services for the concert. S-144, pp. 38 - 39.
Special Deputy Sheriffs were solicited at roll call to volunteer to work at the second event
at Fairfield University. Ex. X1187. A Special Deputy Sheriff who provided us with a sworn
statement indicated that the work was traffic duty in uniform. Ex. X1187. At this event this
Special Deputy Sheriff was paid $60 in cash by Sheriff Valentino, which is less than the normal
per diem pay for a Special Deputy Sheriff. Ex. X1187.
At the concert sheriffs were used to direct traffic, direct people to where they could find
parking, and direct people to the concert. S-144, p. 45. All of the sheriffs who were on duty at the
concert were in uniform. S-144, p. 40. There were 20 sheriffs present. S-144, p. 40. Sheriff
Valentino was in uniform and was armed with a revolver. S-144, pp. 40 - 41. The following
Deputy Sheriffs were present, and in uniform: Chief Deputy Sheriff Robert Magnuson, Deputy
Sheriff Ronald Kadar, Deputy Sheriff Patricia Randall, Deputy Sheriff Rafael Segarra, and Deputy
Sheriff Willie Smith. S-144, pp. 40 - 43. Kadar was armed with a semiautomatic pistol. S-144, p.
43. The following Special Deputy Sheriffs were in attendance: Special Deputy Sheriff Captain
Kevin Cahill, Special Deputy Sheriff David Miller, and six other Special Deputy Sheriffs with
identifiable first names. Ex. 755; S-144, pp. 40 - 43. There was also a sheriff there in uniform with
a motorcycle that had Fairfield County Sheriff Department insignia, a flashing light and a siren.
S-144, pp. 44 - 45. The motorcycle sheriff was armed with a semiautomatic pistol. S-144, p. 45.
In total, 20 sheriffs assisted at the concert at Fairfield University. All were in uniform, and some
were armed.
Fairfield University generated a check for the sheriffs’ services at the concert for $1500.
Ex. 754; Ex. 1140. The bill for these services was provided by Sheriff Valentino. Ex. 753. This
check was made payable to “Fairfield County Sheriffs Dept”. Ex. 754; Ex. 1140. This check was
mailed to Sheriff Valentino at the Sheriff’s Office in the Judicial District Courthouse at 1061 Main
Street in Bridgeport. Ex. 754; Ex. 1140; S-144, p. 47. The check was endorsed “Fairfield County
Sheriff Dept.” Ex. 1140. Although this check was made payable to and bears the endorsement of
the Fairfield County Sheriff Department it was actually deposited into an account at Fleet Bank in
the name of “Charles Valentino or Irene Valentino”. Ex. 1186.
3. Deception By Valentino In Explaining What Was Done At Fairfield
University.
We are also concerned that when Sheriff Valentino was asked to explain what happened at
these events he was apparently evasive and deceptive. He reportedly refused to explain to the
Office of the County Sheriffs what happened. Ex. 757. Moreover what Valentino reportedly told
the Office of the County Sheriffs was simply not accurate in that Valentino indicated to the Office
75
of the County Sheriffs that those who attended the Fairfield University events were not in
uniform. Ex. 757. There is no apparent explanation for Valentino stating that sheriffs were not in
uniform when in fact they all were.
B. CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS.
Sheriffs should not be engaged in extra duty security work at all as sheriffs. This is
especially true for Special Deputy Sheriffs, who are state employees, at this point in time when a
bargaining unit has been certified and negotiations for a first contract are set to commence within
the next few months. Making Special Deputy Sheriffs work without compensation, or paying
them outside of the ordinary compensation process, can raise collective bargaining issues.
There is no valid legal justification for Sheriff Valentino to arrange for the use of
uniformed sheriffs to provide security services in exchange for financial benefit to a private
organization. This is very different from the well-established practice of compensating police
departments for extra duty security services where the needs of public safety require the presence
of police officers. In such instances the compensation goes into the public treasury rather than the
treasury of a private organization. Here, public officials serving the public interest, allowed their
offices or their subordinates to be used in a fashion that conferred a private financial. Particularly
troubling is that this extra duty work resulted in a payment to the Fairfield County Sheriffs
Association, Inc. in light of this organization’s history of making illegal expenditures, as noted
earlier in this report.
We are extremely concerned that Sheriff Valentino and some of the other sheriffs who
were present at the Fairfield University functions were armed. First, sheriffs do not generally have
the training necessary to perform armed law enforcement functions. Moreover, given the
“unofficial” nature of the duties that were performed, if one of the armed sheriffs had actually
drawn and/or used a firearm there could have been considerable civil liability problems. Finally, if
the motorcycle is owned by the Fairfield County Sheriff Department, it should be included in
property inventory records. On the other hand, if the motorcycle is privately owned, it should not
be decorated with law enforcement insignia, and should not have a flashing light or siren —
especially if the owner does not have a Department of Motor Vehicles permit for the flashing
light.
Sheriff Valentino should be required to explain all occasions when sheriffs from Fairfield
County provided extra duty security services of any sort and should account for all funds of any
sort associated with any such activity, regardless of where the funds came from or to whom they
were disbursed. He should also take steps to insure that neither he nor subordinates of his carry
firearms in connection with their duties unless and until the individuals who are armed successfully
complete training equivalent to what we require of police officers in Connecticut. Finally, Sheriff
Valentino should take steps to insure either that the motorcycle decorated with Fairfield County
Sheriff Department insignia, flashing lights and sirens be properly inventoried and accounted for,
if it belongs to the Fairfield County Sheriff Department, or, if it is privately owned, that all
Fairfield County Sheriff Department insignia, flashing lights and sirens, be removed from the
motorcycle bearing such insignia and equipment.
76
IX. ADMINISTRATION OF THIRD PARTY FUNDS BY SHERIFFS.
w We have received information that some sheriffs have not properly administered
execution proceeds in their custody.
w Based upon evidence obtained during the course of the investigation we are
concerned about the administration of these types of funds by some sheriffs.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino has bounced some checks drawn on a
trustee account, an account presumably containing money that was not Sheriff
Valentino’s. The checks that were returned for insufficient funds were remittances
to a law firm of funds that Sheriff Valentino collected pursuant to executions that
he served.
Some sheriffs administer funds of third parties in bank accounts controlled by the sheriffs.
Typically these funds would be funds that a Sheriff, Chief Deputy Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff
obtained through serving bank executions, wage executions or tax warrants.
Money judgments that result from cases that are concluded in the Superior Court may be
enforced in a number of ways. A common way to do this is by obtaining a court order called an
“execution” from the Superior Court.71 Executions against wages are governed by Conn. Gen.
Stat. § 52-361a and permit a sheriff to take a portion of a judgment debtor’s wages directly from
the employer in order to be applied to the debt. Executions against bank accounts are governed by
Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 52-367a, 52-367b and permit a sheriff to take money directly out of a
judgment debtor’s bank account in order to be applied to the debt. Executions against other
personal property are governed by Conn. Gen. Stat. § 52-356a and permit a sheriff to take other
personal property belonging to a judgment debtor, sell it, and apply the proceeds to the debt.
Samples of execution forms are attached to this report. Ex. 481, 482, 483, 484, 485, 486. The
sheriff’s fee for serving an execution, if money is actually collected and paid to the judgment
VIII. DEADBEAT DADS.
In the course of our investigation we have received complaints and other information
concerning billing in connection with capias services on parents who were delinquent in their child
support obligations — commonly known as “Deadbeat Dads”. From our preliminary review it
appears as though the Judicial Branch has achieved significant and commendable reform in
investigating and correcting problems in the way in which the State of Connecticut was billed. We
will continue to investigate this issue, and in particular the concern that some Deputy Sheriffs and
Special Deputy Sheriffs were shortchanged by other Deputy Sheriffs.70
DRAFT/ CONFIDENTIAL; 2000/10/11 12:53:31
77
71 Certain types of property are exempt from execution. E.g.: Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 52-352b, 52-352d.
70 Although it is not related to the billing issues associated with arrests for failure to pay child support, we did learn
that the New London County Sheriff Department utilized at least one unauthorized individual, who happens to be
an oral surgeon, on one of the teams that made such arrests. This concerns us greatly and clearly never should have
happened. It is reported on in depth in the portion of this report on sheriff badges and identification where New
London County is discussed.
creditor,72 is 10% of the amount collected on the execution. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 52-261(6). This
fee is collected from the judgment debtor’s property in addition to the amount of the debt.
Tax warrants are sometimes used to collect unpaid taxes. This could be for certain taxes
due the State. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 12-35. Tax warrants for taxes due the State have the same legal
effect as an execution. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 12-35(a). The fee on a tax warrant served for the State
are “twice those authorized by statute for serving officers… ” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 12-35a. Tax
warrants are also available for municipal taxes. Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 12-130, 12-132, 12-135. Tax
warrants, like executions, permit sheriffs to seize property to be used to pay the taxes.
Under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-35 sheriffs are required to turn over any money collected for
another person within ninety (90) calendar days from the date of collection or upon the collection
of $1000, whichever comes first. Also under this statute, the sheriff is liable for interest at the rate
of 5% per month from the date of collection for failure to make a timely remittance.
Based upon evidence developed during the course of the investigation, we developed a
concern about the administration of these types of funds by some sheriffs. Our review of this issue
is ongoing. In addition, our evaluation of these issues is not sufficiently developed to report on in
detail at this time. Some preliminary observations are summarized below:
A. SOME CHECKS DRAWN ON THE TRUSTEE ACCOUNT USED BY FAIRFIELD COUNTY
SHERIFF CHARLES M. VALENTINO HAVE BEEN RETURNED FOR INSUFFICIENT
FUNDS.
In the course of our investigation we learned that Fairfield County Sheriff Charles M.
Valentino drew checks on an account that he has at People’s Bank — the account is identified on
the checks as “Sheriff Charles M. Valentino, Trustee” — which checks were drawn on insufficient
funds. We obtained copies of three such checks drawn on insufficient funds which were payable to
a law firm. Ex. X1177.
At the time that we learned of the checks which were drawn on insufficient funds
subpoenas were issued to People’s Bank and to Fleet Bank for bank records of accounts
belonging to Valentino. Ex. 1178; Ex. 1179. Since Sheriff Valentino has sought to quash those
subpoenas, we have not yet been able to review his financial records to ascertain why he bounced
checks.
Needless to say, having checks drawn from a trustee account — presumably an account
containing money that was not Sheriff Valentino’s — raises serious concerns. However, we are
reluctant to draw any firm conclusions about what happened here until we are able to review the
relevant records.
78
72 There is no fee if money is not actually collected.
B. OTHER SHERIFFS.
The investigation is currently exploring similar concerns with respect to other sheriffs. As
a result of information that has been obtained in the course of this investigation we plan to further
examine allegations of financial impropriety concerning sheriffs. Clearly this is a topic of concern
among sheriffs themselves. For example, concerns with respect to execution money not being paid
in a timely manner, fraudulent sheriff’s returns, and sheriffs not doing services have been
discussed at meetings of the Fairfield County Sheriffs Association, Inc. Ex. 178, Ex. 183, Ex. 194.
Similar concerns have been expressed to us in sworn testimony. More than one Sheriff’s office
regularly receive complaints concerning certain Deputy Sheriffs. S-83, pp. 23 - 27; S-148, pp. 40
- 47, 51 - 53.
We obtained testimony raising concerns about a Deputy Sheriff who has been the subject
of numerous complaints concerning wage executions, including not remitting on time, putting
execution proceeds in certificates of deposit, borrowing and “wheeling and dealing” with money,
and charging illegal fees. S-9, p. 16 - 20; S-10, pp. 18 - 19; S-134, pp. 45, 47 - 58. Concerns with
respect to timely remittances have been made with respect to a number of Deputy Sheriffs. S-10,
pp. 33, 47 - 48; S-134, pp. 39 - 41. There are also concerns about a Deputy Sheriff who is alleged
to have received kickbacks in connection with collection work. S-9, pp. 48 - 52. More than one
Deputy Sheriff is alleged to be receiving illegal fees. S-9, p. 53; S-10, p. 45. A Deputy Sheriff, the
subject of many complaints, is alleged to be commingling execution proceeds and personal funds.
S-10, pp. 9 - 10. A Deputy Sheriff is alleged to receive fees for serving restraining orders, not
serving the orders, and not refunding the fees. S-10, pp. 17 - 18. A person testified to having
heard from a Deputy Sheriff of charging interest on executions but not remitting it to the
judgment creditor. S-10, pp. 55 - 56. In addition to the above testimony, during the course of this
investigation we have received information from numerous sources, including information from
attorneys, collection firms, and members of the public, as well as information we subpoenaed from
sheriff offices, which raise concerns about mishandling of executions by numerous Deputy
Sheriffs. We continue to investigate these concerns.
Numerous subpoenas have been issued in connection with these allegations, and others. In
order not to impede the further progress of this investigation we are not identifying the specific
number of subpoenas that have been issued, or the identities of the individuals to whom
subpoenas have been issued.73 We plan to continue investigating these issues as well as analyzing
substantial amounts of additional information that we have already gathered. However, the issues
concerning alleged financial impropriety with other sheriffs have not been sufficiently developed
to include them in this report.
79
73 Many subpoenas have been issued for different reasons. No conclusions should be drawn by anyone about the
reasons why particular individuals have been subpoenaed. Some subpoenas, for example, have been issued to some
whistle blowers themselves in order to have them place their concerns under oath. Others have been issued to
cooperating witnesses.
X. SOME SHERIFFS WERE PAID MONEY BY THE STATE FOR THEIR
ATTENDANCE AT NATIONAL SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION
CONVENTIONS.
w Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino received a travel reimbursement from
the state for attendance at a National Sheriffs’ Association convention for which
he also received a stipend from the Fairfield County Sheriff Association, Inc. It
was wrong for Valentino to receive compensation from more than one source for
this event.
w Some Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs have received per diem
compensation from the state for attendance at National Sheriffs’ Association
conventions. This per diem compensation is not authorized by statute.
In the course of our investigation information was provided to us suggesting that some
sheriffs received per diem compensation for attendance at National Sheriffs’ Association
conventions and also that some sheriffs were provided travel reimbursements out of state funds
for such conventions at the same time that they received stipends from sheriff associations for
attendance at such conventions. We reviewed payroll and expense records for the time periods of
the 1997, 1998 and 1999 National Sheriffs’ Association conventions and found that the concern
which was expressed to us was meritorious.
A. PER DIEM COMPENSATION AND TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENTS WERE PAID FROM
STATE FUNDS FOR SOME SHERIFFS WHO ATTENDED NATIONAL SHERIFFS’
ASSOCIATION CONVENTIONS.
Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs are entitled to per diem compensation from
the State for each day of attending court.74 Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-41. Such compensation is also
available for participating in the training program for courthouse security personnel approved by
the Sheriffs’ Advisory Board. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-32b. There is no other legal authority for per
diem compensation from the State for Deputy Sheriffs or Special Deputy Sheriffs. Attendance at
National Sheriffs Association conventions has never been approved by the Sheriffs’ Advisory
Board as part of the training program for courthouse security personnel. Nevertheless, we have
found examples of Deputy Sheriffs and Special Deputy Sheriffs being provided per diem
compensation out of state funds for dates that they attended National Sheriffs Association
conventions in 1997, 1998 and 1999.75 This per diem compensation was illegal since it was not
authorized by statute.
80
75 The 1997 National Sheriffs’ Association convention was in Atlanta, Georgia from June 21 through June 26,
1997. The 1998 National Sheriffs’ Association convention was in Phoenix, Arizona from June 27 through July 2,
1998. The 1999 National Sheriffs’ Association convention was in Columbus, Ohio from June 26 through July 1,
1999.
74 The Chief Deputy Sheriff for each county is also entitled to a relatively small salary. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-40.
Since the Chief Deputy Sheriff is the Deputy Sheriff appointed to be Chief Deputy Sheriff, pursuant to Conn. Gen.
Stat. § 6-37, the Chief Deputy Sheriff is also entitled to a per diem payment for each day of attending court.
In addition, we also found that there were state travel reimbursements paid to Sheriff
Charles Valentino during a year for which he also received a stipend from the Fairfield County
Sheriff Association, Inc. for attendance at National Sheriffs Association conventions. We are
concerned that state funds were utilized for expenses that were also paid by another source of
funds.
Our findings are summarized in a table that we prepared. Ex. 1199. The supporting
documentation is explained below.
1. Fairfield County.
In 1998, Fairfield County Chief Deputy Sheriff William Mehlhorn was paid per diem
compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
compensation was paid for June 25 through July 3. Mehlhorn’s travel form and payroll forms for
these periods were signed by him and by Fairfield County Sheriff Edwin Mak. Ex. 1200; Ex.
1201; Ex. 1202. Although the convention ended on July 2, there is a note attached to the payroll
sheet that includes July 3 that such date was left on the payroll since Mehlhorn said he worked
that day at the convention.
In 1999, Fairfield County Sheriff Charles Valentino was provided a state travel
reimbursement for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention.76 The travel
reimbursement was for $1,228.88.77 Valentino signed the travel authorization and reimbursement
forms. Ex. R1203; Ex. 1204. Valentino also received a payment of $1,000.00 from the Fairfield
County Sheriff Association, Inc. for attendance at this convention. Ex. 546.
Also in 1999, Fairfield County Chief Deputy Sheriff Robert Magnuson was paid per diem
compensation. Per diem compensation was paid for June 28 through July 1. Ex. 1207.
Magnuson’s payroll forms for this period were signed by him and Fairfield County Sheriff Charles
Valentino. Ex. 1205; Ex. 1207.
2. Hartford County.
In 1998, Hartford County Special Deputy Sheriff Chief Supervisor John P. Carragher was
paid per diem compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per
diem compensation was paid for June 27 through July 2. Carragher’s travel form and payroll form
for this period was signed by him and by Hartford County Sheriff Walter Kupchunos, Jr. Ex.
1208; Ex. 1209.
3. Litchfield County.
In 1998, Litchfield County Special Deputy Sheriff Captain John Thomas was paid per
diem compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
81
77 If attendance at the National Sheriffs Convention would otherwise be considered job related in accordance with
normal state fiscal procedures, then a travel expense to this convention would be legitimate. The reason that we
question it is that Sheriff Valentino also received compensation from another source for attending this convention.
76 As Sheriff he is not entitled to per diem compensation.
compensation was paid for June 26 through July 1. Thomas’s payroll form for this period was
signed by him and by Litchfield County Sheriff Richard Zaharek. Thomas’s travel authorization
form was signed by him and by Chief Deputy Sheriff Kevin McGrady. Ex. 1210; Ex. 1211.
4. Middlesex County.
In 1998, Middlesex County Special Deputy Sheriff Marilyn Zeeb was paid per diem
compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
compensation was paid for June 29 through July 2. Zeeb’s travel authorization form was signed
by herself and by Middlesex County Sheriff Joseph Bibisi. Zeeb’s payroll form for this period was
signed by Special Deputy Sheriff Captain Robert Brown. Sheriff Bibisi specifically authorized
Zeeb to attend this convention. Ex. 1212; Ex. 1213; Ex. 1214.
5. New Haven County.
In 1999, New Haven County Special Deputy Sheriff John Getlein78 was paid per diem
compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
compensation was paid for June 28 through July 1. Ex. 1215. Getlein’s payroll form for this
period was signed by him and Special Deputy Sheriff Captain Adolph Scarpa. Ex. 1215. Getlein
also received a payment of $1,000.00 from the New Haven County Sheriffs Association, Inc. for
attendance at this convention. Ex. 1133.
6. Tolland County.
In 1997, Tolland County Chief Deputy Sheriff Sharon Uhlman was paid per diem
compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
compensation was paid for June 20 through June 26. Ex. 1217. Uhlman’s and payroll form for
this period was signed by her and Tolland County Sheriff Michael Piccoli. Ex. 1217.
In 1998, Tolland County Chief Deputy Sheriff Sharon Uhlman was paid per diem
compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
compensation was paid for June 29 through July 2. Ex. 1219; Ex. 1220. Uhlman’s travel form and
payroll form for this period were signed by her and Tolland County Sheriff Michael Piccoli. Ex.
1219; Ex; 1220.
In 1999, Tolland County Chief Deputy Sheriff Sharon Uhlman was paid per diem
compensation for attendance at the National Sheriffs Association convention. Per diem
compensation was paid for June 28 through July 1. Ex. 1223. Uhlman’s travel and payroll forms
for this period were signed by her and Tolland County Sheriff Michael Piccoli. Ex. 1221; Ex.
1222; Ex. 1223.
82
78 Getlein is also a Deputy Sheriff for New Haven County.
XI. GENERAL BACKGROUND CONCERNING SHERIFF SYSTEM.
In the State of Connecticut, the office of Sheriff, commonly referred to as “High Sheriff”
is one of the public offices created by the state Constitution, with a Sheriff elected in each
county.79 Conn. Const. Art. IV, § 25. Some general background concerning the nature of the
authority of the Sheriff, and officers subordinate to the Sheriff, as well as some general
background information concerning the organizational structure of the present sheriff system in
Connecticut is set forth below.
A. TYPES OF SHERIFFS.
There are a number of terms which are often used interchangeably in describing sheriffs.
However, in reviewing the sheriff system it is important to understand the differences among the
several types of sheriffs.
1. Sheriff.
The “Sheriff” is the individual elected to hold the office of Sheriff. Connecticut has eight
sheriffs, one for each county. The general authority of the Sheriff is set forth in Conn. Gen. Stat.
§ 6-31.80 In addition, each Sheriff is a “peace officer” who has full arrest authority. E.g., Conn.
Gen. Stat. §§ 53a-3(9), 54-1f. Each Sheriff is paid a salary by the State.81 Conn. Gen. Stat.
§ 6-33.
2. Chief Deputy Sheriff.
The “Chief Deputy Sheriff” is the Deputy Sheriff who is appointed by the Sheriff pursuant
to Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-37 to be Chief Deputy Sheriff. There is only one Chief Deputy Sheriff per
B. CONCLUSION.
There is no legal basis for providing per diem compensation in connection with attendance
at National Sheriffs’ Association conventions. Such compensation simply does not come within
the statutory authorization for providing per diem compensation to Deputy Sheriffs and Special
Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, receiving per diem compensation or travel reimbursements out of
state funds is questionable where compensation is also provided by an outside source for
attending such conventions. Accordingly, the Office of the County Sheriffs should take whatever
action is necessary to recover state funds which were not properly paid.
83
81 For New Haven, Hartford, Fairfield and New London the salaries are $37,000 per year; for Middlesex, Tolland,
Litchfield and Windham the salaries are $35,000 per year; in addition sheriffs are permitted to retain fees for
serving civil process. See Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-33.
80 “Each sheriff may execute in his county all lawful process directed to him, shall be conservator of the peace and
may, when necessary, with force and strong hand, suppress all tumults, riots, unlawful assemblies and breaches of
the peace and may raise the power of the county and command any person to assist him in the execution of his
office.” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-31.
79 There are eight counties: Hartford County, New Haven County, New London County, Fairfield County,
Windham County, Litchfield County, Middlesex County, and Tolland County. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-1.
county. In addition to the authority of a Deputy Sheriff, the Chief Deputy Sheriff may also “in the
absence, illness of disability of the sheriff or by his direction” exercise all of the powers and duties
of the office of the Sheriff. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-37. Each Chief Deputy Sheriff is paid a salary by
the State.82 Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-40.
3. Deputy Sheriff.
A “Deputy Sheriff” is each individual appointed by the Sheriff as a Deputy Sheriff. There
is a limit on the number of Deputy Sheriffs for each county. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-38.83 The
primary duties of Deputy Sheriffs are service of civil process and each Deputy Sheriff “shall have
the same powers as such sheriff to serve civil process… ” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-37. Deputy
Sheriffs may charge fees for their service of process. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 52-261. Deputy Sheriffs
may also be paid a per diem by the State for attendance at court. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-41. In
addition, Deputy Sheriffs are peace officers who have full arrest authority. Conn. Gen. Stat.
§§ 53a-3(9), 54-1f.
4. Special Deputy Sheriff.
A “Special Deputy Sheriff” is each individual appointed by the Sheriff as a Special Deputy
Sheriff. While the primary duties of Special Deputy Sheriffs are courthouse security and prisoner
transportation, each Special Deputy Sheriff has “all of the powers of the sheriff as provided by
law, except as to service of civil process… ” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-43. Special Deputy Sheriffs are
peace officers who have full arrest authority. Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 53a-3(9), 54-1f. Special Deputy
Sheriffs are paid a per diem by the State for attendance at court. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-41. Sheriffs
are responsible for transporting certain prisoners. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-32d. It is the Special
Deputy Sheriffs that typically perform these prisoner transportation functions.84
5. Honorary Deputy Sheriff.
An “Honorary Sheriff” or “Honorary Deputy Sheriff” means an individual appointed to
that position either by the Sheriff and/or by a sheriff association. This designation has no legal
significance whatsoever, does not appear in any law and does not have any governmental
authority or status of any sort. We have substantial concerns with respect to the “honorary”
designation for reasons described in more detail in this report.
84
84 Under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-41, being a transportation officer is one of the categories that will result in additional
compensation — other such categories include cell block, metal detector and supervisory assignments.
83 “The number of deputy sheriffs to be appointed for Hartford County shall not exceed seventy-two; for New Haven
County, sixty-two; for New London County, thirty-eight; for Fairfield County, fifty-five; for Windham County,
eighteen; for Litchfield County, thirty; for Middlesex County, twenty-one; for Tolland County, twenty-two. In
addition to such number, sheriffs may appoint each other as a deputy in their respective counties and on special
occasions may depute any proper person to execute any process. No person not a citizen of this state shall be
appointed a deputy sheriff.” Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-38.
82 For New Haven, Hartford, Fairfield and New London the salaries are $11,000 per year; for Middlesex, Tolland,
Litchfield and Windham the salaries are $10,500 per year; these salaries are in addition to fees payable to a Deputy
Sheriff. See Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-40.
6. Associate Deputy Sheriff.
An “Associate Deputy Sheriff” means an individual appointed to that position by the
Sheriff. As far as we know, this designation was only used for a limited period of time in
Litchfield County. This designation has no legal significance whatsoever, does not appear in any
law and does not have any governmental authority or status of any sort. Our concerns with
respect to the “Associate Deputy Sheriff” designation are described in more detail in this report.
7. Sheriff Association.
A “sheriff association” is either a voluntary association or nonprofit corporation calling
itself a sheriff association. This type of organization does not appear in any law and does not have
any governmental authority or status of any sort. We have substantial concerns with respect to the
activities of some sheriff associations for reasons described in more detail in this report.
B. ORGANIZATION OF THE SHERIFF SYSTEM.
There are three basic components of the sheriff system in Connecticut. First is the Sheriff
offices themselves. There is also a Sheriff Advisory Board and a state Office of the County
Sheriffs.
1. Sheriff Offices.
In each county there is a Sheriff and a Chief Deputy Sheriff. In all counties there are
Deputy Sheriffs whose principal function is service of civil legal papers. Typically the Sheriff,
Chief Deputy Sheriff, and occasional other Deputy Sheriffs perform courthouse security and/or
prisoner transportation functions. In addition, there are numerous Special Deputy Sheriffs in each
county who typically perform courthouse security and/or prisoner transportation functions.
Recently the Sheriffs have begun meeting together to collectively set policy for all eight of
the sheriff offices. According to minutes maintained by the Office of the County Sheriffs85 these
meetings have been referred to as the Sheriffs Council. While there is no legal entity known as the
Sheriffs Council, a review of the minutes indicates that what actually happens is that the eight
Sheriffs meet and unanimously agree on policies which they then implement for each and all of the
sheriff offices at the same time.
(1) Fairfield County.
The Sheriff for Fairfield County is Charles M. Valentino, Sr. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is
Robert A. Magnuson, Sr. There are 54 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 159 Special
Deputy Sheriffs, including one Chief Supervisor (Richard T. Rilling, Sr.), 4 captains and 9
lieutenants.
85
85 The purpose of the Office of the County Sheriffs is described below.
(2) Hartford County.
The Sheriff for Hartford County is Walter J. Kupchunos, Jr. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is
William R. Smith. There are 68 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 278 Special Deputy
Sheriffs, including one Chief Supervisor (John P. Carragher), one major (Thomas Maloney), 3
captains and 20 lieutenants.
(3) Litchfield County.
The Sheriff for Litchfield County is Richard L. Zaharek. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is Kevin
P. McGrady. There are 11 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 38 Special Deputy
Sheriffs, including 1 captain and 5 lieutenants.
(4) Middlesex County.
The Sheriff for Middlesex County is Joseph E. Bibisi. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is
Sebastian Milardo. There are 18 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 28 Special Deputy
Sheriffs, including 1 captain and 3 lieutenants.
(5) New Haven County.
The Sheriff for New Haven County is Frank J. Kinney III. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is
Domenic Jannetty. There are 58 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 227 Special Deputy
Sheriffs, including one major (Anthony Dirienzo), 6 captains and 12 lieutenants.
(6) New London County.
The Sheriff for New London County is Gerard E. Egan. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is
Thomas A. Connors. There are 23 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 82 Special Deputy
Sheriffs, including 3 captains, 1 senior lieutenant, and 5 lieutenants.
(7) Tolland County.
The Sheriff for Tolland County is Michael Piccoli. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is Sharon
Uhlman. There are 11 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 52 Special Deputy Sheriffs,
including one major (Wayne G. Morin), 3 captains and 4 lieutenants.
(8) Windham County.
The Sheriff for Fairfield County is Thomas W. White. The Chief Deputy Sheriff is Frank
A. Zak, Jr.. There are 8 other Deputy Sheriffs. In addition, there are 52 Special Deputy Sheriffs,
including 2 captains and 5 lieutenants.
86
2. Sheriffs’ Advisory Board.
There is a Sheriffs’ Advisory Board, constituted pursuant to Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-32a,
which consists of some Sheriffs, as well as representation from the Commissioner of Correction,
the Chief Court Administrator and the Comptroller. The duties of the Sheriffs’ Advisory Board
include establishing and administering a training program, establishing operating procedures for
prisoner transportation and courthouse security, receiving appropriations for the sheriff offices,
prisoner transportation and courthouse security. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6-32b. As noted above, the
duties of the Sheriffs’ Advisory Board are very narrow. Its governing statutes have never given
the Sheriffs’ Advisory Board direct oversight of the eight Sheriffs.
3. Office of the County Sheriffs.
There is an entity which exists in the state budget called “County Sheriffs” which is more
formally known as the Office of the County Sheriffs. Ex. 1100. Nowhere is there any statute
governing what the duties of this state office are. In the Digest of Administrative Reports to the
Governor for 1998 - 1999 the Office of the County Sheriffs is described as providing
administrative support to the eight Sheriffs. Ex. 1101.
87
CONCLUSION
For all of the foregoing reasons we feel that allegations concerning widespread and serious
misconduct in Connecticut’s current sheriff system are well founded. Our investigation will
continue and we will report further when additional issues have been sufficiently developed to
report on.
Dated at Hartford, Connecticut, this the 11th day of October, 2000.
_____________________
Richard Blumenthal
Attorney General
______________________
Kevin P. Johnston
Auditor of Public Accounts
______________________
Robert G. Jaekle
Auditor of Public Accounts
88

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