Trial against embattled Troy officer dismissed

Local

The trial for an embattled former Troy Police officer known for costing city taxpayers $174,000 in settlement payouts has been dismissed.

Rensselaer County District Attorney’s Office says the charges pending in court against former officer Dominick Comitale have been dismissed based on a speedy trial motion filed by the defense.

DA Mary Pat Donnelly issued this statement:

“The time for the District Attorney to “answer ready” in this case, that  is,  to  comply  with  New  York’s  statutory  speedy  trial  requirements,  expired  in  October  of  2018. The previous administration’s decision to upgrade the charges and to indict  Dominick  Comitale  in  December,  after  the  speedy  trial  time  had  lapsed,  does  not circumvent this requirement. There has been  an  unfortunate and well publicized pattern of speedy trial dismissals coming out of the DA’s office over the past several years. My administration is working hard to ensure that those types of dismissals do not occur going forward. However, in cases like this, the law dictates dismissal.”

Comitale was charged with misdemeanor assault and a harassment violation.

The charges stem from a September incident at a North Greenbush Little League field. A former little league official Darren Ayotte claims Comitale elbowed him after the off duty officer got between Ayotte and another parent during an argument.

Comitale was on paid leave for more than a year due to a shoulder injury, but he’s cost city taxpayers more than just a salary. So far, $174,000 has been paid out to settle lawsuits accusing Comitale of excessive force.

Comitale resigned as a police officer in the begining of January.

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