Wednesday, July 30, 2014

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Town of Ulster police chief charged with official misconduct

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Albany/HV: Town of Ulster police chief charged with official misconduct
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Town of Ulster Police Chief Matthew Taggard has been arrested and charged with official misconduct. YNN’s Alexandra Weishaupt has details on what led up to the arrest.

ULSTER, N.Y. -- “We are going to seek that he never serve as a police officer again in this or any other jurisdiction.”

Ulster County District Attorney Holley Carnright speaks on the arrest of town of Ulster Police Chief Matthew Taggard, who is currently on paid administrative leave. It's alleged that Taggard was aware of criminal activity and failed to respond, an obligation as a police officer in a position of authority

Carnright says that’s not the first investigation. There was a prior investigation years ago.

“That involved sexual misconduct charges against Taggard, but those charges were never filed,” Carnright said.

As a result of that investigation, additional information recently came to light.

Carnright said, “Officials began to reinvestigate the previous investigation and will continue to do so, but in the meantime, they developed information on the genesis of the charges filed against Chief Taggard for official misconduct.”

And Carnright says more charges could possibly follow.

“It’s not uncommon for people to come forward even years later of being victimized years ago,” Carnright said.

Witnesses say it was around 11 a.m. that police arrived at Taggard’s house on Van Etten Lane in Lake Katrine. They conducted a search warrant at both his home and his office and he was arraigned at Saugerties Village Court Thursday afternoon, a shock to many who worked amongst him

“Chief Taggard is held in high esteem by his brothers in blue.”
He’s been a member of the Town of Uslter Police Department since 1990 and runs the police academy that most young police officers in the county of Ulster attend.

“He has relationships with policemen and women throughout the county of Ulster and I’m sure that they are all feeling the pain of this situation today,” Ulster Supervisor James Quigley said.

“This is not a reflect on the police department at all. The Town of Ulster Police Department is an excellent department,” Carnright said.

Taggard pleaded not guilty and posted his $1,000 bail. Lt. Anthony Cruise has been appointed officer in charge pending the outcome of the investigation.

Anyone with information is asked to call 1-800-225-5324 or call the Ulster County District Attorney’s Office at (845) 340-3280.

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