Hochul Calls For State Probe Into Sandra Doorley, Alleging Interference With Duties

kathy-hochul

Governor Kathy Hochul took action on Sunday, referring Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley to the state Commission on Prosecutorial Conduct over a contentious traffic incident, alleging that Doorley’s actions have compromised her ability to uphold accountability.

The state commission possesses the authority to conduct hearings, summon witnesses, and undertake measures to assess whether prosecutorial conduct violates state laws or court regulations. While its findings can be disclosed publicly, the commission can only offer recommendations regarding potential sanctions.

According to state law, the governor holds the distinct power to remove certain officials from their positions, including district attorneys.

The controversy arose when Doorley was observed speeding in Webster last week, subsequently continuing to her home despite a pursuing officer with lights and sirens. Refusing to stop was considered an arrestable offense by the police. Doorley criticized the officer, contacted the Webster police chief for intervention, and emphasized her role as the DA, implying the officer should have recognized her upon arrival at her residence.

Ultimately, Doorley received a speeding ticket, which she promptly paid the following day.

Although Doorley issued a statement on Thursday, taking accountability without addressing her conduct, the body-worn camera footage from the officers was obtained by WXXI News the next day. Since then, Doorley has not provided any further remarks on the matter.

In her statement on Sunday, Governor Hochul, a Democrat, stated:

“District Attorneys are responsible for prosecuting criminal and traffic offenses, and must perform their duties with the highest ethical standards.

Earlier today, I referred the Monroe County District Attorney to the Commission on Prosecutorial Conduct following the release of police bodycam footage showing her claiming she is above the law, attempting to use her public office to evade responsibility, and acting unprofessionally towards a police officer simply trying to do his job.

In doing so, she was acting in contravention of her responsibility as a District Attorney and undermined her ability to hold others accountable for violating the law. We are deeply grateful to the men and women of law enforcement who put on a uniform each day to protect the safety of all New Yorkers.”

While Doorley had previously been a Democrat before changing her party affiliation to Republican in 2015, Republican legislators have remained silent on the issue following the video’s release. Conversely, Democrats, including the Rochester City Council, have advocated for formal actions against her.