Former village justice Robert Alexander says he would never do anything to hurt the people of Corfu
Former Village of Corfu justice Robert Alexander said after his appearance in County Court this afternoon that he would never, ever, do anything to hurt the people of his lifelong hometown.
Alexander would not discuss the specifics of the case against him -- he's charged with coercion and official misconduct -- but reiterated in a short statement to media gathered outside the courthouse that he's a born-again Christian and that he wouldn't break the law.
"I had the privileged of serving in the Village of Corfu for 24 years," Alexander said. "I grew up there. I love that village, and when I see people or hear people in social media or on television or anything like that say anything about a case, I say, let a case run its course, number one, but number two, the wonderful people of Corfu shouldn’t have to be put through all those kinds of things where it’s played out in the media versus where it’s played out in a court."
Asked whether he would take the case against him to trial, Alexander said that's something for him and his attorney to discuss and otherwise declined to comment.
The changes stem from what may have been an alleged attempt by Alexander to clear the name of his daughter, Brandi Watts.
Watts worked for Alexander as his court clerk from 2009 to 2011.
After Watts was named in a NYS comptroller's audit that allegedly found the court was missing more than $10,000 in funds, Alexander reportedly asked his new court clerk, Pam Yasses, to audit the court books. Yasses reportedly completed the audit and found the court was missing funds.
According to Yasses, who spoke about the situation at an Oct. 8 meeting of village trustees, Alexander did not accept the results of the new audit and Yasses complained that Alexander was trying to intimidate her and get her to quit her job.
The allegations against Alexander reportedly stem from that incident.
Alexander denied breaking the law.
"I won’t say anything about the case, except I will only say I love the people of Corfu and never do anytihng, as a born-again Christian, as a man serving them, I would never even think of breaking the law in any way, shape or form, no less doing it," Alexander said. "I would certainly would never, ever, ever want to bring anything that would hurt those people that I served for 24 years. We'll let it play out in court."
Alexander also told reporters, "I’m a Christian, I believe in Jesus Christ and I believe in the end I will be vindicated."
Neither Watts nor Alexander entered a plea today and both are scheduled to reappear at 2:15 p.m., Aug. 12, in County Court.
Does he actually believe that being a born again Christian makes it impossible for him to commit a crime? I guess he's never seen a prison documentary before.
I believe in Jesus, I couldn't possibly do anything wrong...ever...because Jesus...
This reads a bit like it's precursor to claims of religious persecution.
I'd say that's exactly what the judge is looking for. He's claiming a belief in Christ as a defense for any action he might ever engage in.
Doug for what it's worth, he doesn't need to see a prison documentary. He was a corrections officer for years.
He was a Correction Officer, Counselor and Assistant Deputy Superintendent in the State prison system. And he was good at his job.
Actually, he sounds a lot like the criminals in those prison documentaries.
Sure, John, but what crimes did he commit lately?
Chris, I don't know. How many have you?
While the initial reports look bad for him, I am one of those silly people that say wait until proven guilty.
And for the record, while I know Alexander, we are not friends, so I have no dog in the race
John so your telling me you think he never knew what his daughter was doing? He knew and he tried to cover it up!
I don't think John commented in any way on the current situation.
Nicholas, he might have known, and maybe not. It would not be the first time a family member committed a crime and other family members did not know about it. And maybe he did try to interfere, but I don't know for sure.
He might be guilty as hell, but maybe not. That's my point. But if he is found guilt, then I hope he gets hammered by the court.
Howard, you were right, but he did not seem to notice that.
I don't have a dog in the race either, unless you count judicial efficacy. Also, I probably committed eight crimes yesterday, and when the justice system catches up to me, I'd like to have a trustworthy judge that won't convict me of nine to cover his sorry, embezzling ass.
and his daughter's sorry, embezzling ass.
Whatever, I'm responding to John Roach...I can't remember the last time I cared as much about his opinion as I did about a used piece of toilet paper floating in stale tank water, so there's that.
Chris, FACT, it was his daughter that was arrested for the missing money, not him. He is accused of attempting to help her.
Where did you get that it was him that was accused of embezzling?
He is accused of attempting to help her. Herpa derpa derp.
Judicial efficacy is the basis of democracy FACT.
'Go shit in your hat.' - Junior Soprano
Temper, temper Chris. Just pointing out you missed a fact. No need to have a fit.,
Oh, you think I'm upset? Refer back to comment #16.
Anyone else want to defend criminal judges? John and his poorly constructed arguments bore me.
Let's not get into personal attacks.
Chris, temper, temper again. I am not defending or accusing him. Please try to get that right.
All I said is he has not been found guilty yet. And while the limited reported information puts him in a bad light, that is hardly a verdict.
Who's engaging in personal attacks? I'm just yawning. Terrible judge is terrible, time for a replacement. The electoral process will take care of keeping any of his family members out of office for at least half a generation.
Corfu's going tohave a bigger problem dumping their mayor in the electoral compost pile.
What the hell's wrong with that town anyway?
For anyone who cares, the suspicion of judicial impropriety is as big a problem as actual impropriety. Judges have to be squeaky clean because the legal assumption is that nothing outside the facts of any specific case will ever sway their opinion, otherwise no case can ever be heard fairly.
Judicial propriety and judicial efficacy are the basis of our legal system.
Serving as a corrections officer, or whatever else this dude did over the course of his life has absolutely no bearing here.
Unless he believes in Jesus, of course. that's totally important and could realistically erase any chance or assumption of guilt.
As St. Paul said in his epistles: any Judge who loves Christ shall be held unaccountable for his sins from this day until he ascendeth into Heaven.
But then again Chris your opinion on judges is ......how did you put it?
"Worth as much as a used piece of toilet paper floating in stale tank water."
Everything that a Judge did in his life previous to becoming a Judge has bearing to the ethics situation.
"In fact, the expiration date was last week on all your bulls**t with that."
The reference to his having been a Correction Officer was related only to a comment about jailhouse conversions.
Nah, Kyle, that was my opinion on a certain other poster here. I hold Judges in pretty high esteem actually, which is why I take offense when one commits a crime (allegedly.)
Tony- 'You know, sometimes what happens here is like takin' a sh*t
Dr. Melfi - Yes, okay, but I prefer to think of as more like childbirth.
Tony - Trust me, It's like takin' a sh*t.
"For anyone who cares, the suspicion of judicial impropriety is as big a problem as actual impropriety. Judges have to be squeaky clean because the legal assumption is that nothing outside the facts of any specific case will ever sway their opinion, otherwise no case can ever be heard fairly."
How could anyone disagree with that Chris?
The only problem with your tussle with John however, if you are using that as the basis of your argument, is that the State Judicial Board DID in fact remove him, so the appearance of impropriety issue is moot at this point.
He is going on trial at this point, John is right, if he is convicted, because he was a judge at the time of the offense and did so in that position, may the full weight of the law hammer him.
His long service in the Corrections Department may mitigate sentence just as it might for anyone else convicted of a crime, but it shouldn't and likely won't affect the jury if this case goes that far. My guess is that there is going to be a plea deal in the offing anyway.
Mark, my original argument in this thread is that his insistence that belief in Christ's divinity somehow bars him from doing any wrong is stupid. In fact, it's possibly the stupidest thing I've ever heard as a defense to criminality.
My 'tussle' with John is non-existent.
To be clear:
Mr. Alexander is not accused of participating in the crimes his daughter is accused of. If the accusation against Mr. Alexander could be characterized as anything related to the alleged missing funds it is that Mr. Alexander was engaged in a cover up. He is accused of intimidating an employee who believes she found confirming evidence of missing funds.
Nobody has ever accused Mr. Alexander in participating in the misappropriation of funds.
According to the Village attorney, Mr. Alexander is responsible for returning missing funds, regardless of how they went missing. That isn't the same thing as saying Mr. Alexander was involved in the funds going missing.
Mr. Alexander did not seek reelection in for the Village of Corfu justice position. He is, however, a justice in the Town of Pembroke. He remains a justice, though all of his cases have been reassigned to David O'Connor and he is not allowed to assume new cases until further notice.
To go out on a limb a bit, my impression of Mr. Alexander, having followed this closely now for 18 months, is that he is protective of his daughter and honestly doesn't believe she did anything wrong and that he honestly believes he did not do anything inappropriate in regards to his most recent village court clerk. And I imagine in time we'll get to see what a jury thinks of this little corner of the mess.
And things like, "John and his poorly constructed arguments bore me" is getting into personal attack realm. It's mild and John can handle himself, but it's really not appropriate in this forum.
I agree, using Christianity or any religion for that matter as proof that you are innocent of wrongdoing is pretty distasteful. Whether he's guilty or not. Having said that, he's hardly the first public figure to go down that road.
...and all the public figures who went there before him were just as ridiculous.
"Hamlet," Act 5...
SCENE I. A churchyard.
Enter two Clowns, with spades and pickaxes
Is she to be buried in Christian burial that
wilfully seeks her own salvation?
I tell thee she is: and therefore make her grave
straight: the crowner hath sat on her, and finds it
How can that be, unless she drowned herself in her
Why, 'tis found so.
It must be 'se offendendo;' it cannot be else. For
here lies the point: if I drown myself wittingly,
it argues an act: and an act hath three branches: it
is, to act, to do, to perform: argal, she drowned
Nay, but hear you, goodman delver,--
Give me leave. Here lies the water; good: here
stands the man; good; if the man go to this water,
and drown himself, it is, will he, nill he, he
goes,--mark you that; but if the water come to him
and drown him, he drowns not himself: argal, he
that is not guilty of his own death shortens not his own life.
But is this law?
Ay, marry, is't; crowner's quest law.
Will you ha' the truth on't? If this had not been
a gentlewoman, she should have been buried out o'
Why, there thou say'st: and the more pity that
great folk should have countenance in this world to
drown or hang themselves, more than their even
Christian. Come, my spade. There is no ancient
gentleman but gardeners, ditchers, and grave-makers:
they hold up Adam's profession.
Was he a gentleman?
He was the first that ever bore arms.
Why, he had none.
What, art a heathen? How dost thou understand the
Scripture? The Scripture says 'Adam digged:'
could he dig without arms? I'll put another
question to thee: if thou answerest me not to the
purpose, confess thyself--
What is he that builds stronger than either the
mason, the shipwright, or the carpenter?
The gallows-maker; for that frame outlives a
Yeah......a con man
Why was he so adamant about circumventing the system to get her the position???