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Embattled Cold Case Detective Retires

By Joyce Kryszak

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wbfo/local-wbfo-835972.mp3

Buffalo, NY – After a year and half fighting to prove he did nothing wrong, Buffalo Cold Case Detective Dennis Delano announced his retirement Wednesday.

The decision came just one day after an arbitrator ruled that Delano was guilty of all charges of insubordination. Delano continued to investigate the Crytallyn Girard death after it was deemed not to be a murder. He also released a crime scene video to the press. Delano has been on paid suspension for more than a year. He was expected to get an unpaid suspension but keep his job after a penalty hearing scheduled for Thursday.

But Delano said he can not return to the Buffalo Police department under the conditions outlined in an arbitrator's ruling. He was told he would have to pledge obedience to the department. Delano said that would be impossible.

Delano said he has no regrets, but admits he "pushed the envelope." He said detectives bend the rules all the time to get the facts.

In this case, Delano believes the department punished him to shut him up. Delano said the Girard death was undeniably a murder. And he believes, for some reason, that was covered up.

He said he is worried the ruling in his case will have a chilling effect on other officers. He pointed to the unsolved murder of Amanda Weinkowski as one example of a possible cover-up that should be more closely investigated. His attorney Steve Cohen says they might try to protect other officers from intimidation by filing a federal lawsuit against the department.

He said they would seek a ruling giving officers the freedom to go to the press when all other options are exhausted. And he says, enough monetary damages to inspire change.

Cohen said an announcement about a lawsuit could come within a couple of weeks. But there will be no appeal of the arbitrator's ruling. And Delano said he will not appear at the penalty hearing.

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