In a perfect world, New York State Police Superintendent Kevin Bruen would have resigned in disgust at seeing his boss’s reaction to the Supreme Court decision that bears his name. Instead, he chose to aid Gov. Kathy Hochul in her quest to circumvent the Court and continue to deprive New Yorkers of their right to bear arms in self-defense. Apparently that wasn’t enough to keep the governor from launching an investigation into his alleged workplace misconduct, and on Friday afternoon Bruen abruptly announced his decision to resign effective October 19th.
The Albany Times-Union was the first to report on Bruen’s alleged misdeeds, which centered around his relationship with a human resources director at the agency.
State Police Superintendent Kevin P. Bruen, who took over leadership of the agency 15 months ago, is under scrutiny from Gov. Kathy Hochul’s office following allegations that he had shielded a former human resources official from internal complaints due to their close working relationship, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.
Hochul, during a meeting Tuesday with the Times Union’s editorial board, confirmed that she had directed her counsel’s office to look into myriad allegations that have been swirling around Bruen for several weeks, including in posts made on private social media websites that are reserved for current and former State Police members.
… “This is an individual I inherited,” Hochul said, referring to former Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s appointment of Bruen as superintendent in June 2021, two months before the former governor’s resignation. “I will gather all the facts and I will make a determination. … I’m not prepared to sit here and say I’m going to fire somebody until I have the evidence necessary. I’ve heard of allegations. And I’ll tell you a lot of people say things about me on websites, too. … I think everybody’s owed the investigation, which is ongoing at this time.”
The former human resources director, MaryEllen Tedesco, resigned from the agency last month. She had worked for the State Police since 1982, and her duties included vetting job applicants and assisting with hiring decisions. Tedesco could not immediately be reached for comment on Tuesday.
Her resignation followed in investigation by the state’s Office of Employee Relations — formerly known as the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations — into her handling of a job application by a person who uses a wheelchair, according to the two people with knowledge of the matter.
According to another person with knowledge of the allegations, Bruen had allegedly shielded Tedesco, 60, from internal complaints lodged last year about her handling of human resources matters. The person said that several high-ranking members of the State Police brought complaints to Bruen about Tedesco, but that the superintendent took no action and allegedly asked that the matter not be documented.
“I want to get the facts, and I’ll make a decision based on the facts,” Hochul said. “I want to know more information.”
If you notice, all the reporting to date has been fairly vague and short on particulars. I can’t help but wonder if the real devil isn’t in some details that might have been revealed by the investigation. With Tedesco already having resigned and Bruen gone in just a few weeks, however, it’s an open question as to what happens to the investigation and whether its findings will ever be made public.
Despite the changes at the top of the New York State Police, don’t expect it to make any difference when it comes to the agency’s enforcement of the state’s unconstitutional gun laws. While I’d love to see Acting Commissioner Steven Nigrelli buck his boss’s anti-gun directives, I doubt he would have gotten the job, even temporarily, if he wasn’t willing to go along… at least until the courts order him to stop; something that will hopefully happen in a few weeks at most.