Personnel and disciplinary record, subject: Chief James Charles Burke (ret.)

T. McElwee filed this request with the Suffolk County Police Department of Suffolk County, NY.
Due June 22, 2020
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: T. McElwee

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the New York Freedom of Information Law, I hereby request the following records:

The complete personnel record of former Chief James Charles Burke, and all disciplinary records that identify Burke as a subject. For specificity and to rule out duplicates, the subject Burke is listed by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons as being age 55, rendering his year of birth as approximately 1965. His dates of service were from 1986 to 2015.

It is the requesting party's understanding that pursuant to legislation signed by the Governor of the State of New York, the section of law that would previously prevented disclosure of this material (Civil Rights Law Section 50-a) repealed, and all such records are now covered by the Freedom of Information Law.

In accordance with the Freedom of Information Law as it has been amended by aforementioned legislation, records that may be released include "the complaints, allegations, and charges against an employee; the name of the employee complained of or charged; the transcript of any disciplinary trial or hearing, including any exhibits introduced at such trial or hearing; the disposition of any disciplinary proceeding; and the final written opinion or memorandum supporting the disposition and discipline imposed including the agency's complete factual findings and its analysis of the conduct and appropriate discipline of the covered employee."

Under precedent, Freedom of Information Law uses a "balancing test" method of weighing privacy interests favoring redaction/denial against the public interest in favor of disclosure. This matter is of clear public interest for the following reasons: Burke was a public figure having been the highest ranking officer of the Department for four years; he was convicted of federal charges in 2015.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 5 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

T. McElwee

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

An interim response, stating the request is being processed.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Thank you for contacting the Suffolk County Police Department. A Department representative will generally respond to your correspondence within three business days.

Emergencies: If you are contacting us about an EMERGENCY, please dial 911 immediately. If you are outside Suffolk County and are writing about an emergency within Suffolk County, please call our Communications Center at (631) 852-6400.

Non-emergencies requiring a police response: If you do not have an emergency, but wish to report a matter that requires a police officer respond, please call (631)852-COPS (2677). For non-emergency police response within Suffolk County, please dial (631)852-COPS—Please do not dial 911. Additional telephone numbers are also listed on our webpage at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/> by clicking on the Phone Directory icon. Please do not call precincts directly for matters requiring a police response.

Help Keep Our Communities Safe: Please report tips and information regarding crimes to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS(8477), or by sending the information via text message by texting your message to “SCPD” and then “CRIMES” (274637). Tips can also be submitted via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com<http://www.tipsubmit.com/>. The identity of persons providing information is kept anonymous, and rewards may be available!

Stay informed: Information on programs and initiatives of the Police Department are often posted on our website at www.suffolkpd.org<http://www.suffolkpd.org/>. You can also subscribe to our newsletter and media alerts by signing up for e-Updates at www.suffolkcountyny.gov<http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/>, selecting the Public Safety and FRES category.

We value your feedback: Please tell us how we are doing by completing a Citizen Satisfaction Survey online at suffolkpd.org,<http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/survey.htm> clicking on the Citizen Satisfaction Survey icon on our homepage.

REMEMBER: During periods of inclement weather, major incidents or disasters, it is essential that you not call “911” unless it is a true emergency. Emergency lines must be kept clear for those calls that are absolute emergencies. For non-emergency police response, always dial (631) 852-COPS (2677). Please do not dial “911” unless it is a true emergency.

From: T. McElwee

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the New York Freedom of Information Law, I hereby request the following records:

The complete personnel record of former Chief James Charles Burke, and all disciplinary records that identify Burke as a subject. For specificity and to rule out duplicates, the subject Burke is listed by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons as being age 55, rendering his year of birth as approximately 1965. His dates of service were from 1986 to 2015.

It is the requesting party's understanding that pursuant to legislation signed by the Governor of the State of New York, the section of law that would previously prevented disclosure of this material (Civil Rights Law Section 50-a) repealed, and all such records are now covered by the Freedom of Information Law.

In accordance with the Freedom of Information Law as it has been amended by aforementioned legislation, records that may be released include "the complaints, allegations, and charges against an employee; the name of the employee complained of or charged; the transcript of any disciplinary trial or hearing, including any exhibits introduced at such trial or hearing; the disposition of any disciplinary proceeding; and the final written opinion or memorandum supporting the disposition and discipline imposed including the agency's complete factual findings and its analysis of the conduct and appropriate discipline of the covered employee."

Under precedent, Freedom of Information Law uses a "balancing test" method of weighing privacy interests favoring redaction/denial against the public interest in favor of disclosure. This matter is of clear public interest for the following reasons: Burke was a public figure having been the highest ranking officer of the Department for four years; he was convicted of federal charges in 2015.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 5 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

T. McElwee

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Hello,

I’ve reached out to our records department for an update on the status of this and the several other requests from today. In the future, please make sure all requests are sent through this email, PIO@suffolkcountyny.gov<mailto:PIO@suffolkcountyny.gov>. It appears these requests were initially sent to a different Suffolk County Police email address, which generates the automated responses included below. While they were forwarded to the records department when originally received, the media office had no knowledge of the requests.
-Erin

From: T. McElwee

Erin,

Thanks for the reply, I will advise MuckRock to adjust emails accordingly.

The acknowledgment letter I received earlier is attached.

Thank you,
T. McElwee

From: Suffolk County Police Department

Records sent you an acknowledgment letter and you will be getting a follow up in the near future.

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