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Troy police officer accused of tipping off drug ring
TROY - A Troy Police Officer is facing charges after the State Attorney General's Office said he leaked information about a drug ring investigation.
Officer Brian Gross is charged with tampering with physical evidence, official misconduct and obstructing governmental administration in the second degree.
"Stark disappointment, surprise no doubt, but very disappointed. He was a very well regarded officer," said Troy Police Chief John Tedesco.
Chief Tedesco said Gross has 10 1/2 years experience with the department and in that time became a well regarded and well liked officer.
He said Officer Gross was suspended without pay Wednesday morning.
The Attorney General's Office said Gross is accused of leaking information about a Rensselaer County drug ring investigation he was working on with state police, giving a suspect time to prepare before a search warrant was executed back in February.
"Revealing confidential information puts the lives of law enforcement agents at risk and jeopardizes criminal investigations. It's particularly troubling to see an officer accused of abusing his position by violating the very laws he was sworn to protect," said New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
According to court paperwork, Gross told a person referred to as "person #1'" that "person #2" has to "watch his back." The paperwork alleges that Gross warned that there was a "good chance the police would be getting a warrant" for "person #2's" home.
When police did execute those warrants, the Attorney General's Office said no drug evidence was found.
The Troy Police Chief said that several month long investigation then ended, without any arrests.
"I asked him and he says he's not guilty and beyond that I haven't had any discussions with him," said Attorney Stephen Coffey, who represents Gross.
Coffey said the allegations are serious, but they're fighting them.
"I've done this long enough to know that just what's on a piece of paper doesn't impress me that much. But we have to deal with it. It is serious but we will see what happens," he said.
The Chief couldn't comment much on the investigation, but did say if these allegations are found to be true, then much will have been lost.
"It's frustrating beyond words obviously. A lot of work here, a career of a very good officer has been lost," said Chief Tedesco.
Chief Tedesco said the department does not think there are any issues with other cases Gross worked on.