Off-duty NYPD officer busted for drunk driving on Long Island, dad works in commissioner’s office

Luiz C. Ribeiro/New York Daily News/TNS
·2 min read

An NYPD officer whose father works in the police commissioner’s office has been busted for driving drunk on Long Island.

Officer James McAuliffe was arrested in Babylon early June 27, NYPD officials said.

The NYPD, which only publicizes arrests of cops busted in New York City, said McAuliffe — assigned to the collision investigation squad — was suspended after his arrest and is now on modified duty, without his gun and shield, working a desk assignment in the Detective Bureau.

According to court papers in Suffolk County, McAuliffe was stopped about 4:30 a.m. after his Toyota Tacoma pickup truck hit a median on the Southern State Parkway.

McAuliffe told a responding officer he was cut off and lost control, the court papers showed. Though he said he’d had one beer about 1 a.m., his breath smelled of booze, his speech was slurred, his eyes were bloodshot and his gait was unsteady, the court docs showed.

He’s been charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated.

McAuliffe didn’t respond to a request for comment. His lawyer, Steven Politi, said the court papers’ information was “baseless.”

He said McAuliffe’s vehicle was one of three involved in an accident — the cop’s truck flipped onto its side —and that McAuliffe and others were hospitalized, though none were seriously hurt.

“There is absolutely no evidence to suggest my client was intoxicated in any way,” Politi said. “This is what I consider to be a baseless arrest without probable cause.”

“I fully expect my client to be exonerated.”

The officer’s father is Lt. Denis McAuliffe, an administrative lieutenant assigned to Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell’s office.

In 2015, a month before the younger McAuliffe joined the NYPD, a federal jury awarded $325,000 to Officer Augustina Balu, who claimed in a lawsuit that Lt. McAuliffe sexually harassed her, was obsessed over the color of her “granny panties” and retaliated against her after she refused to sleep with him.

Jurors rejected the retaliation claims, but determined Balu was subjected to a hostile work environment and ordered the lieutenant to pay $25,000 in punitive damages on top of the six-figure judgment against the city.

The elder McAuliffe had denied all the allegations against him, including that he couldn’t remember if he ever referred to the NYPD Transit Bureau as a “sex fest,” or if he slept with more than 10 female subordinates.