Firing Of Ithaca Officer Prompts Review Of Police Cases

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ITHACA, NY (WSKG) – An Ithaca Police Department investigator has been fired after admitting to perjury in an arrest last year.  As a result, the case continues to affect public defenders in Tompkins County.

According to Tompkins County District Attorney Matt Van Houten, Officer Kyle Paolangeli admitted to entering an apartment that was part of an drug investigation before getting a search warrant.

As a result, charges against the suspected were dropped. Van Houten then asked for a special prosecutor to investigate the case.

Paolangeli admitted guilt in court last week and was immediately fired.

The consequences of his perjury continue. Past cases that involved the officer have been reviewed and others are still under review.  Lance Salisbury heads up the Tompkins County Assigned Counsel office.

“We’re starting to get inquiries from former clients…,” said Salisbury, “regarding their, their former cases in which they plead or been convicted at trial seeking a review and that’s gonna require a review, in some cases, of what was the officers role in those cases.”

The tax-funded office provides legal help to people who can’t afford a lawyer.

Salisbury said the review work has already cost taxpayers several thousand dollars but he estimates the total will be less than $10,000.