Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 1


G On April 15th Brandon Rifenburg was involved in the theft of a vehicle in the Town of Marbletown. The theft was reported almost immediately and a number of police agencies responded. The defendant failed to comply with numerous orders to stop the vehicle and instead led the police on a high speed chase through multiple jurisdictions in Ulster County. After going through two police road blocks, Rifenburg struck one of the patrol vehicles in pursuit, whereupon the defendant was forced off the road. During the course of the defendants apprehension, an Ulster County Sheriff deputy fired his service revolver, striking the defendant twice. On Friday, April 26th, Mr. Rifenburg was released from the hospital. Upon his release he was charged with a number of offenses, six of which are felonies. Those matters are pending. In conjunction with Sheriff VanBlarcum and having determined that Mr. Rifenburg was neither an apparent flight risk nor a danger to the community, I recommended to the Sheriff that charges not be filed until the defendants release from the hospital. Had charges been filed immediately, the Sheriff would have been obligated to post around-theclock security of Mr. Rifenburg while in the hospital in Albany, an expense which I feel was not warranted. As District Attorney of Ulster County, it is my custom to refer most, if not all, police-involved shootings to the grand jury. It is also my custom not to disclose the names of people being investigated by the grand jury unless they have been charged with a crime. I have attempted to be consistent in that process since taking office in 2008. From time to time, as we investigate and prosecute cases, my office is caused to file an application to County Court for the assignment of a special prosecutor if I determine that I have an actual or potential conflict with the continued prosecution of a case or even where my involvement in the case might rise to the level that it would create the appearance of impropriety. My review of the officers use of force in the above referenced matter is one such case. The officer who is the subject of this inquiry has had business dealings with my family, and with me personally, none of which are related to our positions in law enforcement. However, I view those dealings as having raised a potential appearance of impropriety should I conduct the investigation, and thus I have moved to have a special prosecutor appointed to continue the investigation. That application was granted by County Court Judge Donald A. Williams, and the Orange County District Attorneys Office has now been assigned this matter. I suggest any further questions be directed to that office.