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Morning Spew

Friday’s To-Do List: Background Check of the NYPD Inspector General

It would probably be a good idea to make sure the guy you've picked for the job doesn't have a history of alleged sexual harassment.

Oakland Lake in Queens, during the summer. (Hell Gate)

On Thursday, the New York Post reported that Charles Guria, who was tapped by the Adams administration to become the NYPD’s watchdog, has lost his job after a Post investigation revealed he had allegedly sexually harassed women in his previous position at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office. 

As the NYPD inspector general, Guria would have been tasked with not only investigating police misconduct, but would have played a key role in overseeing the implementation of any reforms stemming from an ongoing Department of Justice investigation into how the NYPD treats survivors of rape and handles sexual assault cases. Perhaps not the appropriate job for someone who was alleged by a former prosecutor who worked with him to have described rape survivors as either “true victims” or “drunk girl cases.”

The Post described some of Guria’s alleged misconduct:

The former longtime chief of the Brooklyn DA’s Civil Rights and Police Integrity Bureau is accused of touching staffers inappropriately, taking photos of their intimate body parts, making sexual comments about their appearances, commenting on their breasts, ogling them and asking about their dating lives, among other misconduct.

None of these incidents resulted in formal complaints or findings of wrongdoing.

Guria, 61, who’s prosecuted a number of high-profile police corruption cases since he started with the office in 1990, including the 2010 Michael Mineo sodomy trial, is known for lingering in the offices of female prosecutors for “uncomfortable” periods of time and cozying up to young staffers during parties and after-work happy hours.

He also made derogatory remarks about sex crime victims, and, in December 2018, posted a since-deleted meme on Facebook showing Barbie dolls posed as strippers with $20 bills scattered around.

“Lmfao… ‘Tis the season,” he captioned the snap, a screenshot shows.

In another instance, Guria reportedly grabbed the buttocks of another assistant district attorney, in what became well-known in the office as the “butt incident.”

As one former prosecutor told the Post, “This person who just flouted and abused authority in this way is now going to be in charge of patrolling abuse of authority. It’s crazy.” Guria, meanwhile, “issued a blanket denial of the allegations.”

Here’s what else we’re reading:

    • Who could have predicted that there would be racial disparities in who’s been able to get vaccinated against monkeypox? As the Times writes, “Black New Yorkers, who make up 31 percent of the at-risk population, received only 12 percent of doses administered so far, according to data from the city’s Health Department.”
    • New Yorkers who think their health insurance covers abortions may want to double-check.
    • In other abortion-related news, two anti-abortion extremists harassed staff at Planned Parenthood’s clinic in Brooklyn on Thursday. Attorney General Letitia James appeared to identify the two as the “notorious” anti-abortion duo Bevelyn Beatty and Edmee Chavannes:
    • The Broome County jail has been ordered to lift its ban on in-person visits, which has been in place for two years. While jail officials had argued it was necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19, NY Focus notes that “between January and October 2021, the Broome County Sheriff’s department took in more than half a million dollars from detainee phone calls and tablet use.”
    • Dan Goldman, who perhaps has the dubious distinction of being the sole candidate ever to be endorsed by both the New York Times and Donald Trump (I get that it was meant to be an insult, but still!), continues to dump his personal wealth into his campaign for Congress. 
    • The New York Times is now engaged in a grim war of words with New York magazine, having proclaimed that there is in fact a drink of the summer, contrary to the magazine’s earlier declaration. But let’s be honest, we all know the drink of every summer is a gin and tonic???
    • Social Services commissioner Gary Jenkins, who apparently just loves to party, is claiming the department’s now-former spokesperson was not fired in retaliation for telling City Hall that Jenkins was allegedly engaging in a little bit of a cover up, but because she was “unprofessional.” “There’s documented instances where she was unprofessional with her peers, with her subordinates and with senior management,” Jenkins said on Thursday.

Let’s all bring this energy into the weekend:

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