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The Ties That Bind

January 28, 2019

En route to federal prison for bribery, Lieut. Paul Dean, formerly the No 2 at the Pistol Licensing Division, created a mini-brouhaha, detailing in court papers what he called a “culture of corruption” that favored the rich and powerful in issuing pistol permits.

Click here to read what the police brass say about NYPD ConfidentialThe alleged culprits: Dean’s former boss, Deputy Inspector Mike Endall, and former Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, who, when he was appointed in 2014, supposedly asked Endall to stay on and continue the “current ‘favor’ system.”

And the most notable recipients of this so-called favoritism? Donald Trump, his son Donald Jr. and former lawyer Michael Cohen, who Dean said were granted full-carry licenses despite lacking proper credentials.

After two months of testimony in federal court about widespread, low-level freebies and favoritism that resulted in the bribery conviction of a Hasidic businessman/ fixer and left the NYPD with egg on its face, Dean’s accusations make the NYPD appear even dirtier.

Click here to read the New York Times profile of Leonard LevittBut, as with so much in the NYPD, things are more convoluted than they appear. Rather than corruption, the alleged favoritism to Trump represents the binding of longtime department ties.

Let’s start with Endall, who joined the Pistol Licensing unit over a decade ago as No. 2 to the unit’s commander, Roy Richter. Richter left in 2007 and became the president of the Captain’s Endowment Association [CEA], the union that represents captains up through deputy chiefs. Subsequently, Endall was appointed the unit’s commanding officer.

Unlike Dean and others in the unit, Endall was never accused of taking bribes. Rather, he was known as an “expeditor” or “facilitator.” As a longtime pistol licensee put it, “He was always a gentleman. He treated people with respect.”

But as the freebie scandal widened, he was disciplined for what appeared to be minor administrative lapses. He took a 45-day rip, waived his comp time, and retired from the department in 2017 — most importantly with his pension intact.

Recommended by Richter, Endall is now a vice president of Excel Global, a security company headed by Neal Garelik, the son of Sanford [Sandy] Garelik, a former top NYPD official, later president of the City Council and an unsuccessful mayoral candidate.

Excel also sponsors the CEA’s annual Sanford Garelik memorial golf outing. “We [the union] pay full boat,” said Richter. “I credit Neal Garelik as one of our biggest benefactors. Last year we raised $70,000 for high school and college scholarships.”  

Guess where that golf outing has been held for the past few years? At Donald Trump’s golf course in the Bronx.

Lieut. Dean also described supposed favoritism shown to a supporter of Mayor de Blasio — whom the Daily News identified as realtor Charlene Gayle. Gayle allegedly cozied up to the Orthodox Jewish community, seeking full-carry pistol licenses for her clients. Each request, said Dean, was known as a “de Blasio special.”

Click here to read the Washington Post article on NYPD ConfidentialIs it any wonder that the mayor and Commissioner Jim O’Neill have tried to turn the public’s attention away from police corruption to Neighborhood Policing, a policy the two take every opportunity to claim — with no proof — is in part responsible for the city’s record low crime rates?

Still, the subject of police corruption won’t go away. Next up are the four chiefs and an inspector who at the height of the freebie scandal retired “voluntarily” under pressure from Bratton. The five — deputy chiefs Andrew Capul, Eric Rodriguez, John Sprague, David Colon and Inspector Peter DeBlasio — were never charged criminally. Rather, the chiefs allegedly accepted free dinners, trips and tickets to sporting events that violate departmental guidelines. DeBlasio allegedly refused to cooperate with the feds. Each of them retired under a deal worked out by Richter and former Deputy Commissioner for Legal Affairs Larry Byrne.

Now the five are suing for their back pay and accrued leave time, which totals hundreds of thousands of dollars. They also want their jobs back.

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