Dispute simmers over Syracuse coach investigation
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) – A prosecutor frustrated that police won’t turn over records about a sexual abuse investigation into Syracuse University assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine now has a subpoena, but the dispute over the material won’t be settled this week.
Attorneys for Onondaga County District Attorney William Fitzpatrick and Mayor Stephanie Miner appeared Tuesday before state Supreme Court Justice Thomas Murphy, who ordered the proceeding sealed.
Fitzpatrick issued a subpoena for records from a police investigation into Fine in 2002, but Miner said the city police department won’t turn over records in a “piecemeal” fashion to any entity, including the prosecutor. She said police first will conduct a thorough investigation.
Both sides are due back in Murphy’s chambers next Tuesday.
Two former ball boys for the Syracuse basketball team say they were molested more than 25 years ago by Fine, who is on paid leave from the university. Fine has called the charges “patently false.”
Fitzpatrick said that when the subpoena was delivered to police on Monday it was greeted with an obscenity.
“I’ve never seen this happen in my history with the DA’s office,” Fitzpatrick told The Post-Standard of Syracuse about the lack of police cooperation. But he added: “The records are going to be provided.”
Fine, in his 36th season as an assistant to Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim, has asked for a quick review and expressed confidence he would be vindicated.
Chief Assistant District Attorney Domenic Trunfio said Tuesday that a full grand jury investigation will be conducted.
Fitzpatrick said he took the unusual step of getting a subpoena from a judge after police refused requests for information since Thursday, when ESPN first reported the allegations.
Miner released a statement Monday saying no information would be shared until police complete their investigation. Repeated attempts by The Associated Press to reach Miner for comment on Tuesday were not returned.
“The Syracuse Police Department will not be releasing information about the investigation to the media or any other entity in a piecemeal fashion,” Miner said in her statement.