January 07, 2014

Police officers attain detective status by operation of law


Police officers attain detective status by operation of law
Sykes v City of Niagara Falls, 2013 NY Slip Op 08684, Appellate Division, Fourth Department

Certain police officers serving in the Niagara Falls Police Department (NFPD) Crime Scene Unit filed a petition pursuant to CPLR Article 78 proceeding seeking a court order directing the Department to designate them detectives pursuant to Civil Service Law §58(4)(c)(ii).

§58(4)(c)(ii) of the Civil Service Law, in pertinent part, provides: “Notwithstanding any other provision of law, in any jurisdiction other than a city with a population of one million or more or the state department of corrections and community supervision … any person who has received permanent appointment to the position of police officer, correction officer of any rank or deputy sheriff and is temporarily assigned to perform the duties of detective or investigator shall, whenever such assignment to the duties of a detective or investigator exceeds eighteen months, be permanently designated as a detective or investigator and receive the compensation ordinarily paid to persons in such designation.”

Supreme Court granted the petition, concluding that the officers had been temporarily assigned to the same duties as detectives in the NFPD for eighteen months or more and thus were entitled to be “permanently designated” as detectives as required by the statute.

The Appellate Division affirmed the lower court’s ruling, finding that viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the prevailing officers, Supreme Court’s decision was supported by a fair interpretation of the evidence.

The decision is posted on the Internet at:

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