UPDATE: Schenectady city school lawyer charged with misdemeanor unlicensed driving

Schenectady City School District attorney Shari Greenleaf was charged Saturday with misdemeanor aggr

Schenectady City School District attorney Shari Greenleaf was charged Saturday with misdemeanor aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, authorities said today.

Greenleaf, 49, of Sumner Avenue, was charged Saturday, just after 10:30 p.m. with third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation, a misdemeanor, and operating an unregistered motor vehicle, an infraction.

Contacted by phone this morning, Greenleaf said the incident stemmed from her hitting a parked car, then finding out a previous ticket in Niskayuna hadn’t been resolved as she had believed.

“This is a personal matter,” she said. “It has nothing to do with the school district.”

Greenleaf said she hit the parked car and, “like any responsible adult,” called police for a report.

Officers responded and found that her license had been suspended for failure to pay a fine in Niskayuna, police spokesman Sgt. Luciano Savoia said.

Greenleaf told officers she paid the fine, Savoia said. Greenleaf was told to bring proof to court and the proof would get the charge dismissed, Savoia said. Greenleaf was backing out of her driveway when she struck a parked car.

Police also found the car’s registration had expired, leading to the unregistered motor vehicle infraction. It was unclear when the registration had expired.

Greenleaf has a contract as attorney for the school district through 2011.

As the school attorney, she has been a key figure in the district’s response to terrorism and arson allegations against former city schools facilities director Steven Raucci.

The district paid nearly $13,000 for an investigation and report on the Raucci matter. The report has been kept secret from the public and is the subject of a lawsuit filed by The Daily Gazette and the Times Union seeking its release.

A hearing on the issue is scheduled for Friday.

In opposing the release, Greenleaf said in an affidavit that the premise of the report was to allow employees to avoid disciplinary action if they incriminated themselves in their statements.

Greenleaf and attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald, who is also representing the district, also submitted affidavits arguing that the report can be kept confidential because it was prepared to help the school board make policy decisions and therefore is exempt from provisions of the Freedom of Information Act. They cited several legal decisions that they contend protect the secrecy of documents created for that purpose — even if they were created by an outside agency or individual, as they were in this case.

A spokeswoman for the city school district said there would be no comment from school officials on the Greenleaf matter.

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