Nassau corrections officers rally over 'security lapses'
Nearly 300 corrections officers rallied Tuesday outside Nassau County Jail in East Meadow over what they call serious security problems at the facility.
The corrections officers blamed their bosses, Nassau Sheriff Michael Sposato and Deputy Undersheriff Philip Zorn, for cutbacks at the jail. Union head Brian Sullivan says there's no money to pay for extra officers to do random inmate searches or fix broken security alarms on gates at the back entrance of the jail.
"If anyone thinks that all the cuts in this jail and the refusal to do the most basic of maintenance isn't a problem or a danger to the public safety, you're out of your mind," says Sullivan.
Nassau County Commissioner of Corrections Charles Campisi brought members of the media to the jail's gate where they say the alarm was disabled. He pointed out that the guard booth in the location has a corrections officer inside with access to security cameras. He says the alarm was disabled "decades ago" to prevent false reporting.
Charles Campisi also said there are no inmates housed in the area near the gate.
Sheriff Michael Sposato insists that the inactive alarms create no public safety issue. He says inmates are no longer housed in the area where the alarms are, and that there are other security measures in place.
Sheriff Sposato released a statement in response to the protests saying in part, "The rally today reflects certain correction officers who are not pleased with recent administrative actions I took to ensure safety and additional supervision at the jail."