Schenectady police lieutenant’s lawyer seeks dismissal of charge

All he did was hug his son goodbye, attorney says
Lt. Mark MCracken leaves Schenectady City Court with his girlfriend (center) and attorney Rebecca Bauscher on Wednesday.
Lt. Mark MCracken leaves Schenectady City Court with his girlfriend (center) and attorney Rebecca Bauscher on Wednesday.

SCHENECTADY — The attorney for city police Lt. Mark McCracken filed a motion Wednesday in City Court to dismiss a criminal contempt charge that accuses McCracken of violating a court order during an incident at the Union College hockey rink.

Rebecca Bauscher, McCracken’s attorney from Schenectady-based Rappazzo and Bauscher, argued in front of City Court Judge Guido Loyola that her client did nothing to violate the order. She said he was simply attending his son’s hockey practice on Jan. 7.

McCracken is alleged to have come in “close physical proximity” to Cassie Walker, his wife, at the hockey rink that day, according to court documents.

Walker and McCracken are going through a divorce. McCracken was charged with second-degree criminal contempt on Jan. 16, a charge that accuses him of violating an order of custody and visitation.

Bauscher said the order sets what type of contact McCracken is allowed to have with Walker and their son, but it doesn’t prevent him from being in contact with both Walker and their son during their son’s hockey practice.

She said the only thing McCracken did during the incident on Jan. 7 was hug his son goodbye.

“He didn’t commit a crime, and he didn’t violate an order,” Basucher said on Wednesday.

McCracken, who was sworn in as a police officer in July 2002 and was promoted to lieutenant in May 2011, was considered to be a finalist for the chief of police post in 2016. He also had served as the police spokesman at one point.

Walker is facing her own criminal charges in Niskayuna Town Court. According to a court official, she is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny, a felony, for allegedly taking $1,202.16 from McCracken’s Key Bank account on June 23.

McCracken filed a complaint against Walker on Aug. 15, and she was arrested and arraigned on Dec. 20.

McCracken was the sole owner of the Key Bank account, according to the court official.

Walker appeared in Niskayuna Town Court on Wednesday evening, but the matter was delayed. Her attorney, Derek Hogan of Tully Rinckey, declined to comment after the court appearance.

McCracken is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 14, where Schenectady County Assistant District Attorney Maria Apruzzese said her office will give its response to the motion to dismiss the charges.

Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney said he had not made a decision, as of Wednesday, as to whether his office would recuse itself from the case.

McCracken, who appeared in court with his girlfriend, Meghan Johnson, would not comment after the proceeding. Bauscher said McCracken is still on paid leave.

Categories: News, Schenectady County

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