Schenectady County sheriff fires his stepson, a sergeant, following arrest on DWI charge

Sgt. Daniel Coppola in 2018
PHOTOGRAPHER:

Sgt. Daniel Coppola in 2018

A sergeant in the Schenectady County Sheriff’s Department, the stepson of the sheriff, has been fired after being arrested on drunk driving charges in Colonie Monday night, authorities said.

Sgt. Daniel Coppola, 26, was arrested  by Colonie police just before 10 p.m. Monday on Central Avenue at the intersection of Reber Street, police said.

Witnesses had observed Coppola swerving and town officer pulled him over after he moved from his lane unsafely, Colonie police Lt. James Gerace said.

Coppola faces one count each of driving while intoxicated and aggravated driving while intoxicated with a blood-alcohol content above 0.18%, more than twice the legal limit. He also was issued a traffic ticket for moving from his lane unsafely, police said.

This arrest follows his arrest in May 2018, when Coppola worked for the Schenectady Police Department. Coppola then was accused, while off duty, of driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.12 percent, above the legal limit of 0.08 percent. He later pleaded guilty to driving while ability impaired.

The Sheriff’s Department said in a press release that there was an administrative review of the incident, which led to Coppola’s firing.

Coppola violated a number of codes of conduct, Undersheriff James Barrett said. Barrett did not specify which ones off-hand Tuesday evening.

Coppola has worked at the Sheriff’s Department for just under three years, Barrett said.

Coppola’s father, Sheriff Dominic Dagostino, issued a statement in a release.

“I am terribly disappointed and heartbroken over the actions of my son,” Dagostino said in the statement. “During my tenure as sheriff it has been my obligation and responsibility to the people of this community to maintain the integrity, credibility, and legitimacy of this office. Any action short of terminating this employee would undermine those principles and do a great disservice to the office that I hold in such high regard.”

Barrett said Coppola had no other personnel issues at the department.

“He was an exemplary employee,” he said.

Coppola is scheduled to appear May 3 in Colonie Town Court.

Categories: News, Schenectady County

5 Comments

William Marincic

I could have because I hold the police and Sheriff’s department in high esteem. I would have expected nothing less.

we lost our country

what would DAGOSTINO know about TRANSPARENCY & ACCOUNTABILITY?
he hired MICHAEL GERACI who was suspended from the APD. just keep shuffling those bad cops around to ensure that they get their paychecks and pensions.

Most of the places (if not all) where I’ve been employed over the past several decades had specific paragraphs in their employee manual that specifically called out nepotism as forbidden. That seems like a good policy.

Apparently the Schenectady Sheriffs feel they’re somehow above concern, or simply don’t follow the rules. A familiar pattern now that the public can better see how the behave.

Sheriff Dagostino likely calculated properly that he had no choice but to issue the statement he did. But sadly his boasting about how good he’s been otherwise rings hollow if you look at the big picture.

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