Village Board Accepts Resignation

Officer was involved in 2012 shooting death in New York City

The Cold Spring Village Board on June 23 accepted the resignation of Officer Scott Morris. He had been hired late last year but agreed to resign after residents protested his role as supervisor at the scene of a police killing of an 18-year-old man in the Bronx in 2012.

Morris was not charged but faced New York Police Department reprimands for “failure to notify police communications” and “failure to supervise members during a police incident.” He resigned from the NYPD in 2017. 

The vote was 3-0. Mayor Dave Merandy was absent and Trustee Fran Murphy abstained, saying later that she felt the board had done its due diligence before hiring Morris.

“I didn’t want him to resign; it wasn’t fair to him,” she said. Murphy said Morris, who provided details of the 2012 incident when interviewed by the board, had indicated he would resign if the incident ever became an issue.

2 thoughts on “Village Board Accepts Resignation

  1. My God… let’s not upset the mob. The word of a cop must be bad? We have all lost our spines. I have just found out during the last three or four months that I must be a very bad person just because of the way that I was born. The real racists are those who think people of color are not smart enough or work hard enough to make it on their own? They are both just as smart as we might think that we are and certainly work just as hard, if not harder. If we continue to destroy our history, soon we might even forget the nasty fact that slavery did exist in our country. Stop tearing down our past! Yes, some of it was awful but there was far more good than bad.

    What was done to the blacks, Irish, Italians or any others who looked a little different from the rest was despicable! Let’s celebrate the good and don’t repeat the past that was bad. Growing up on the wrong side of the tracks in Mount Vernon, discriminated upon my family and me 81 years ago as white trash — there were a lot of us. Some of the cops treated us that way. We were always considered to be the bad ones. It was far from all of the police; just some of the bad apples as exists today. However, we should never throw out baby with the bathwater, right?

    We are all Americans and should both love and revere our nation. Correct the wrongs but not by mobs. The last mayor of Chicago believed that the liberals should never let a bad happening go to waste. That’s exactly what happened to that black gentleman who was murdered by one very bad apple and watched by others who should have done something. We all grieved and were angered by this sickening event. Had that been my son, my father, my brother, justice would have come quickly.

  2. When I read the arguments about terminating a Cold Spring police officer, I thought about chopsticks. That is, I thought about the Chinese description of hell as a place where food is abundant, but no one can eat because their chopsticks are so long, they can’t get food into their mouths. Everyone starves. In heaven, on the other hand, the chopsticks are also long, but because everyone feeds each other, all are well-fed.

    We Americans are blessed with great material abundance and high ideals. We are learning – in the Black Lives Matter demonstrations in the midst of this terrible pandemic – that we have habits of mind and follow rules that prevent us from enjoying that abundance or realizing our ideals. Many of those habits and rules are rooted in slavery and its legacy, racism.

    Take, for example, the Electoral College. If we are honest, most of us would agree that electing someone president with fewer popular votes than his opponent doesn’t seem quite right. The “tell” is that men who win such elections invariably call into question the accuracy of the popular vote count or claim many votes cast were fraudulent. The Electoral College is one of slavery’s many gifts, intended to add 3/5ths of each slave to the population used to compute a state’s vote for president. Today, the Electoral College still undermines our effort to make ours a government by the people, with fair elections, with each of us participating with an important and equal voice.

    Take, as another example, the Second Amendment. This, too, is a legacy of slavery, intended to guarantee the right of states to maintain militias, seen as essential to suppressing slave rebellions. We are exceptional among developed countries for suffering almost 40,000 gun-related deaths annually, of which about 24,000 are suicides. This slaughter now denies many of us the tranquility and trust offered by strong communities, and even terrorizes our children in school.

    Finally, take the Cold Spring Police Department. Taxpayers in the village have shouldered a huge property tax burden, amounting to about a quarter of their total municipal budget, for police protection above and beyond that of their neighbors in Nelsonville and Philipstown. That money could go toward building amenities we would all appreciate, a new firehouse, a riverside community center for village families, or pavilions on Dockside. What makes us feel that we must spend this money on men and women equipped with lethal weapons? If not racism, surely it is a close cousin.

    Terminating the Cold Spring officer may or may not have been justified. I don’t know. What I do know is that it does not address the much harder issue, the one that is making us starve.