Some quick housekeeping: Our podcast has launched on Spotify. It’s just the teaser for now, but the next episode will release Tuesday, April 9th. Subscribe, give me some feedback, and let me know what you think! iTunes is coming, but Apple takes a while apparently to approve a podcast.
If you follow our Twitter or Instagram, you may have noticed that recently, I attended an open forum hosted by Suffolk County District Attorney Tim Sini. Sini got involved in the events at Gilgo Beach later than some, and was happy to let the FBI in on the case, while serving as police commissioner for what seems like five minutes. His appearance in The Killing Season painted him as a sort-of “white knight” figure, a crusader against corruption on Long Island.
The symposium I attended, called “The Verdict,” is meant to serve as a transparent look inside Sini’s office, while highlighting the good his office is apparently doing. Sini is relatively young, handsome, and has certainly made great strides towards reversing the notion that Suffolk County is super corrupt. Holding one of the first of these “town hall”-style meetings at a high school in the town of Brookhaven (long nicknamed “Crookhaven”) was a nice touch.
When Sini was appointed police commissioner at 35 years old, Newsday was quick with an editorial highlighting his lack of experience in a managerial capacity. This may ring true, even now, as Sini highlighted that he’s brought on numerous figures to oversee various aspects of Suffolk County’s legal hurdles. While yes, more jobs and more experienced people in an office is a good thing, the more folks there are, the higher probability for corruption exists.
I tweeted the other day and have said in discussions with sources that MS-13 was the perfect gift for Sini, Suffolk County and the citizens of Long Island. While yes, gang activity is terrible, it has since drawn resources and attention away from the events at Gilgo Beach (events, which, according to various towns who claim ownership of the area, didn’t actually occur in the area, even though they’re more than happy to claim that the beaches are the best on Long Island). The rise of a legitimate gang problem on Long Island shifts the focus for Sini away from the unsolved murders and lack of arrests made in the Gilgo Beach killings, and on something more tangible and visible, something that every Long Islander eager to protect their property value can rally behind - the elimination of MS-13 from public schools and our streets.
Is Tim Sini doing a bad job? Not at all, I, personally, like him very much. That said, he reminds me a little too much of a famous District Attorney from the pages of Batman - Harvey Dent.
Dent started idealistic, took on organized crime, murder and more, and in the end, became the corruption he promised to fight. “I believe in Harvey Dent,” is the slogan used in the comics and in the film The Dark Knight. I believe in Tim Sini, but I worry that focusing on MS-13 and surrounding yourself with too many cooks can certainly spoil the broth. Losing sight of finding the Long Island Serial Killer may not seem like a big deal, but by not following through and doggedly pursuing the case, you show that you don’t care about the plight of the sex worker.
I leave it to Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent in The Dark Knight to put it simply: