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Three NYPD detectives have been indicted on charges of stealing bottles of champagne from a VIP table at the Electric Zoo Festival in September 2017. Detectives Wojciech Czech and Warren Golden were suspended and released without bail, while a third detective Jonathan Gonzalez is due to stand trial this week. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said: “Public trust in the criminal justice system depends on the integrity of law enforcement officers in the line of duty and whether they follow the same rules as everyone else.” The New York Police Department will continue to investigate and initiate further disciplinary action as required.
Two New York cops stole high-end champagne at a festival they were guarding
Two NYPD detectives have been accused of stealing expensive champagne while on duty at an electronic music festival. The third detective did nothing to stop them, prosecutors said as they announced indictments for all three officers. More details told Fox News.
Detectives Wojciech Czech and Warren Golden appeared in court on May 15 and were suspended from work. Cech and Godin pleaded not guilty. Both were released without bail.
A third detective, Jonathan Gonzalez, is due to stand trial on all charges later this week.
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“Detective Cech is shocked and saddened by the criminal charges,” his lawyer Oliver Storch said, adding that his client is a 10-year law enforcement veteran who “loves to protect and save lives.”
Gonzalez’s attorney, Peter Brill, said he believes the charges “come from a misunderstanding of the facts, and after the jury has had a chance to hear evidence in this case, he will be cleared of all charges.”
Three detectives were on duty on September 3 at the Electric Zoo Festival on Randall’s Island.
According to the Manhattan prosecutor’s office, Gonzalez took two unopened bottles of Ace of Spades champagne from the VIP table. Prosecutors say Cech was involved in passing the bottles to Gonzalez after the latter briefly set them down to fetch a backpack, with Golden watching and not interfering.
Some festival-goers who ordered champagne realized what had happened and blamed detectives in the presence of a festival security official who alerted his employer, prosecutors said. The employer notified the police.
Prosecutors said the $2,900 worth of champagne was removed from Gonzalez’s backpack and returned to guests who ordered it.
“Public trust in the criminal justice system depends on the integrity of law enforcement officers in the line of duty and whether they follow the same rules as everyone else,” said Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.
All three detectives have been on different assignments since last fall. The New York Police Department said it would “continue to investigate the facts and initiate further disciplinary action if necessary.”
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