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What you need to know for 10/23/2017

Glenville officer 'in good spirits' after being hit by friendly fire

Glenville officer 'in good spirits' after being hit by friendly fire

Shenendehowa teacher killed in confrontation
Glenville officer 'in good spirits' after being hit by friendly fire
The message board outside the East Glenville Fire Department on Saratoga Road.
Photographer: MARC SCHULTZ

A Glenville police officer wounded by friendly fire during a fatal confrontation with a Shenendehowa Central School District teacher is expected to recover and return to the force, local officials said.

Officer Ben Ferretti was in good spirits Sunday at Albany Medical Center, said state Sen. Jim Tedisco, who visited Ferretti in the hospital. The bullet did not hit any vital organs, and narrowly missed his spine, Tedisco said in a statement.

Ferretti, 22, was hit in the abdomen when officers fired at Brian J. Skinner, who charged at police with a knife, state police said. Police responded Friday night to a call at Skinner’s home for a domestic dispute, though an investigation turned up no signs of a dispute and no other occupants in the home.

State police continued to investigate the incident Sunday, and had no further updates.

Glenville and Scotia police responded to 10 Pashley Road about 11 p.m. Friday for a report of a domestic disturbance. The caller stated Skinner had a gun, according to Glenville police.

When officers approached the home, a man emerged from the front door and charged officers with a weapon. Police shot and killed the man, identified as Skinner, and Ferretti was shot in the abdomen, just under his bullet proof vest.

The investigation was turned over to state police, who said there was no evidence of a domestic dispute, and there were no other people in the home at the time of the incident.

Ferretti was hit with a bullet during a "law enforcement weapon discharge," state police said. It has still not been determined which weapon caused his injury.

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Ferretti, who has been on the force for less than two years, underwent surgery and is recovering at Albany Medical Center. Tedisco and Glenville Town Supervisor Chris Koetzle paid him a visit Sunday morning, joined by Ferretti’s parents and fellow officers.

“I found him in good spirits, fairly strong,” Koetzle said. “It appears he’s still on track for a full recovery. He talked a little bit about missing getting out there, and that he’s looking forward to that.”

Koetzle recalled swearing in Ferretti as a new officer during a January 2016 town meeting. There’s been an outpouring of good wishes for Ferretti, Koetzle said, with town resident and businesses reaching out to see if they can be of assistance and to offer support for local police.

The message board outside the East Glenville Fire Department on Saratoga Road asked passers-by to keep Ferretti in their thoughts and prayers. Ferretti volunteered at the firehouse for the past few years, Fire Chief Andy Pohl said.
 
Ferretti is a hometown kid, having grown up in Glenville, Pohl said. Pohl's initial reaction to the incident was shock, and he and the rest of the department are hoping for a speedy recovery, he said.
 
“He’s a very active community member,” Pohl said. “I know he’s coached my kids and other kids in football. He’s made a big impact at a young age.”

Skinner, 32, was a fifth-grade teacher at Orenda Elementary School in Clifton Park.

Neighbors on Saturday described Skinner as quiet, with few ever interacting with him personally. The school district on Saturday released a statement saying it was saddened by Skinner’s death, and that it had nothing to do with his role as a teacher.

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