The findings of an independent investigation into the alleged actions of Huntington Supervisor Chad Lupinacci raise disturbing and as yet, still unanswered questions.
The highly qualified national labor and employment law firm, Jackson Lewis, was retained in March 2020 by a unanimous vote of the Huntington Town Board to examine allegations that Lupinacci exhibited sexual predatory behavior with a then town employee.
After months of interviews during 2020 with those linked to the allegations, the lead investigator concluded, “I was stymied in my attempt to uncover all the facts by what I believe are deliberate misrepresentations and/or withholding of relevant (even critical) information.”
The investigator writes that one person with knowledge of the alleged incident, “flat out lied to me.”
Jackson Lewis is a firm not inexperienced with investigations of this type. The investigator’s assessments point to a covert effort orchestrated by the administration to bury this incident.
Claims that this investigation was politically motivated are preposterous. Two Republican town board members joined the unanimous, bipartisan vote to authorize and fund, in multiple actions, this investigation. Those votes came without any cries of foul after town board members were presented with the very serious allegations before them and followed their own protocol for investigating incidents of alleged sexual harassment.
As with any organization, Huntington’s sexual harassment policy mandates any employee with knowledge or information of an alleged incident to promptly report the matter for follow-up and inquiry.
I urge all Town residents to read the redacted report and judge for themselves. (It can be obtained under a Freedom of Information request, by e-mail to TNeira@huntingtonny.gov). The allegations bear a striking resemblance to those now being leveled against the Supervisor in civil court.
Arriving on the heels of this week’s felony arrest of the Lupinacci administration’s former maritime services director along with news reports of the Town’s building department in utter disarray-- up to and including the 2020 resignation of its public safety director for lewd and inappropriate comments directed at a female employee, this report’s conclusions are sadly emblematic of dysfunction and deceit in the Lupinacci administration.
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