Albany police officer suspended after St. Anne Institute incident

Two Albany police officers suspended as brass looks into incident at St. Anne Institute

Published 10:55 pm, Friday, August 12, 2016


An Albany officer has been suspended and another placed on administrative duty as the department investigates the circumstances that led to one of the officers allegedly slamming a girl to the ground last month during a police call at St. Anne Institute, group home for troubled teenagers.

Officer Ervis Miftari is suspended without pay and Officer John Schueler is on administrative duty pending the outcome of the internal investigation, Chief Brendan Cox said Friday.

“We’re going to do a thorough and fair investigation and what comes of that I don’t know at this point,” Cox said.

The incident involving the young girl and Miftari took place in late July and was captured on videotape, the chief said. A person briefed on the case said the internal investigation is focusing on statements Miftari made to internal affairs investigators in relation to what was portrayed on the videotape.

St. Anne Institute offers “a structured and supportive environment for young women ages 12-21 that are unable to live at home, attend public school or function in the community,” according to its website. In 2002, the group home on North Main Avenue installed multiple additional video cameras after sex abuse charges were filed against an aide at the school. At the time, the Times Union reported cameras were installed in hallways to help monitor more than 125 residents who ranged in age from 12 to 18 and stayed an average of six to eight months.

The school for troubled women and girls often receives clients who are placed there by family courts throughout the state. Others are referred to the facility by school districts, and some of the clients attend classes at the school but don’t live there. Albany police routinely respond to the school, often to help staff deal with an unruly student, officials said.

Miftari is a uniformed patrol officer who joined the department almost three years ago.

A spokesperson for St. Anne Institute did not respond to a request for comment Friday. Officer Kevin Flynn, president of the Albany Police Officers Union, could not be reached for comment.


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