Earlier today, City of Mount Vernon Special Prosecutor William O. Wagstaff III moves forward with disciplinary charges against Mount Vernon Police Officer Ryan Huges despite Mount Vernon City Court Judge William Edwards’ dismissal of criminal charges, Thursday March 24th.
Among the eight charges, Hughes was charged with Delinquency Seriously Affecting General Character Of Fitness For Office, Negligence and/or Dereliction In Performance of Official Duties, Unbecoming Conduct, Neglect of Duty, Willful Maltreatment of a Prisoner, and Failure To Safeguard A Prisoner in Your Custody.
On Thursday, February 18, 2021, Wagstaff was appointed by Mayor Shawn Patterson Howard to investigate allegations of corruption within the Mount Vernon Police Department. The appointment of civil rights attorney William O. Wagstaff esq., as a special prosecutor for further investigations into the alleged wrongdoing in the Narcotics Squad of the Mount Vernon Police Department sparked by the highly publicized audio tapes secretly recorded and provided by MVPD Whistleblower Officer Murashea “Mike” Bovell. Wagstaff was the attorney selected by the mayor to chair her judicial appointment committee, in July 2020 to fill the seat of Judge Adrian Armstrong after his elevation to the New York State Court of Claims of Judge Adrian Armstrong after appointment by Governor Andrew Cuomo and confirmation by the New York State Senate.
Hughes was accused of pushing the woman in his custody into an interview room with such force that she tripped over a garbage can and stumbled across the room. The video shows her hitting a wall made of cinderblock and falling to the ground. Because she was handcuffed, she was unable to break her fall with her hands. Her left foot caught the garbage can and she stumbled into the 6-foot room, folding to her side after apparently hitting the wall.
Thursday, June 11, 2020, just days before the Democratic Primary, after several months, former Westchester County District Attorney Anthony Scarpino’s office finally arrested MVPD Officer Ryan Hughes for using excessive force on a black woman while in custody. Hughes was charged with reckless endangerment in the second degree.
Mount Vernon City Court Judge William Edwards dismissed the case of Mount Vernon Police Officer Ryan Hughes before the jury could deliberate, Thursday, March 24th. Lack of evidence was cited as to why Judge Edwards dismissed this controversial case that received outrage from the community when the video surfaced. Sources have revealed to BW even the jury was confused as to why they could not deliberate.
But Special Prosecutor William O. Wagstaff III decided to move forward with disciplinary charges (see charges below).
Officer Hughes was served in person in Wappinger Falls, Thursday morning where he entered a plea of not guilty to all charges.
Stay tuned to Black Westchester for more on this developing story!