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Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Today's Hartford Courant had an editorial about "What's Wrong With Hartford". For those that didn't see the editorial or don't read the Courant, here it is in its entirety:

What's Wrong With Hartford
Two Examples Public officials take advantage of their positions

Just because former Mayor Eddie Perez has been convicted on felony corruption charges and sentenced to three years in prison doesn't mean city government in Hartford has been completely disinfected.

An internal police investigation found in August that Officer Hector Robles knowingly falsified time cards and bilked the department out of more than $9,000 in overtime. A disciplinary hearing concluded last week, but Police Chief Daryl K. Roberts has yet to decide on a punishment.

Termination has been recommended. That's what he should get, since Mr. Robles has neither the pride nor conscience, apparently, to resign either as a police officer or from his other job of public trust, state representative from the 6th District.

Mr. Robles raises the "everybody does it" defense, claiming that 11 other officers are falsifying their overtime records too. Has he told the chief who they are?

This case should be referred to the state's attorney.

Also last week, city councilwoman Veronica Airey-Wilson was granted accelerated rehabilitation, a special form of probation that will allow her record to be expunged if successfully completed. She had a city contractor — the same one involved in the Perez corruption case — install a granite countertop in her home. She was accused of tampering with evidence to show that she had paid for the installation even though the contractor, Carlos Costa, testified that he did the work for free.

"My biggest regret is that I guess I'm so open and trusting of everyone and in my choice of selecting someone to do the work in my home. I didn't recognize the flaws," she told Judge Julia D. Dewey Thursday. She's got to be kidding. Didn't "recognize the flaws"?

Mr. Costa certainly recognized the flaws of mixing personal and city business. The contractor, whose $5.3 million contract with the city was plagued by delays and shoddy construction, testified that he installed her countertops for free, at her request, because "she was a councilwoman and she was in a position to help me."

Ms. Airey-Wilson's attorney said his client will continue to serve on the city council during her probationary period. She should resign to spare Hartford another embarrassment.

What are Hartford's children to think when a police officer and a council member — let alone a mayor — use their public positions to profit and then won't take ownership of what they did?

end of Courant editorial

If you would like to make your thoughts known on the Robles matter, Chief Roberts office can be reached at 860-757-4010. If you would like to make your feelings known on whether Veronica Airey-Wilson should resign from the Council, the Hartford Republican Town Committee meets tonight at City Hall or call Airey-Wilson's office at City Hall at 860-757-9575. As always, feel free to leave your thoughts and comments here.


Anonymous said...

Ah' now we know why HPD has been dragging their feet and letting Robles work on the streets during all this. Looks like Chief Roberts is at a crossroad. Open an IAD case on 11 cops or try to save face and his friends by discrediting Robles claim.

Chris said...

The following comment is a tangental topic. Did anyone happen to read Cornell Lewis's commentary about the convicted mayor in the West Indian American newspaper? If not, you can read it on-line @
Lewis actually compares the felon to Jesus. You'll have to read it for yourselves, but for me, I have to say I've never read something so blashemously ridiculous. LOL.

Anonymous said...

Kevin, any idea how Robles came up with 11 other cops? It sounds like a possible time card fraud conspiracy by a group of cops.

Anonymous said...

Yup, there are plenty of guys that did the same thing as Robles. But they are in good standing with the upstairs, so they, and their supervisors wont be touched. WHO ARE THE OTHER ELEVEN DARYL?

U N Owen said...

The editorial is a warning to Pedro and the Council...get off your collective asses and protect us from political predators and leeches !!!!!

Pedro...say something about Eddie,rose and henessey getting jobs from Hartford organizations, it doesnt help if you comfort someone who's house was on fire while some leech like Henessey gets a job while you arent looking.

Hartford is a stinking cesspool of corruption,crime and political types turning their heads while political prostitutes rip us off.

L. Deutsch, City Council (Working Families Party) said...

There now appear to be several characters receiving, directly or indirectly, City money (an ex-mayor, an ex-chief-of-staff, an ex-corporation counsel), and potentially another ex-chief-of-staff. Besides declaring that these engagements don't look or smell good, at least one of us (NOT anonymously) on Council who is not a lawyer would be interested in references for specific ethics code (municipal or state level) and legal violations that could be invoked for specific actions in these embarassing sorry episodes.

peter brush said...

Councilman Deutsch:
The ethics code appears to be silent on the matter of city officials taking jobs with entities funded by the city. Does prohibit former employees from using or disclosing confidential info. Does prohibit for period of time representing entities before the city.
On the other hand, I do think it reasonable to consider Sec. 2-902(A) with respect to the actions of Veronica Airey-Wilson. "Nor shall the individual engage in any financial dealings with any person whose activities are regulated or supervised by the individual's department, board, commission, or agency or accept a gift from such persons."

peter brush said...

What are Hartford's children to think...?
Aside from the fact that there's not a single kid who knows who Robles/Airey are, it would appear they have other things to think about. The below from Jeff Cohen, Wnpr.
...David Medina is the spokesman for schools superintendent Steven Adamowski. In an email to WNPR, he said that whatever bullying took place with the 12-year-old boy didn’t happen in the school and that the alleged bullies were too old to be students at Burns.

Adamowski gave a bit more detail in an email to city Councilman Jim Boucher. In that email, the superintendent says he suspected that one or more of the bullies could be from Bulkeley High School. He also said he doesn't yet know whether the bullies were part of a neighborhood gang, but he was clear that there is no gang activity at Burns School itself.

The incident with the 12-year-old boy wasn’t the only thing happening after school at Burns that day. Police say a school bus was passing by just after three o'clock when students on the bus and on the street started arguing. A short distance later, some students tried to force their way onto the bus. A bit further along was a group of children with hoodies up, throwing rocks at the bus and breaking a window...
...The incidents at Burns School come just over a month after a crowd of students gathered at the heart of downtown for an afterschool fight that police said was like a mob scene.

L. Deutsch, Council, Working Families said...

I want to thank Peter Brush right away for helpful information. We who are there truly to "represent" don't always have enough experience or facts at hand or even know from whom in government to get reliable information. So outside comments are key for a truly democratic (small 'd') process.

peter brush said...

Councilman Deutsch:
You are welcome.
Take my advice with a pinch of salt, and value it at what you paid for it, but I do think it would be valuable if the facts in the Airey/Wilson case were established by our muni authorities, and if she were to receive at least some sort of reprimand. I really don't think her actions should simply be ignored by our city govt., even though the criminal court was willing to grant her probation without a trial.