The Times Union by PAUL NELSON - February 17, 2010
It's the second time Loyola has exonerated Lewis. In March 2008, Loyola, in another bench trial, cleared Lewis of harassment related to allegations he had fought with his ex-wife over custody of their young son. But his legal woes are far from over and top police officials have publicly said they want him fired. He is currently being held without bail in Schenectady County Jail after facing a second DWI charge in relation to a Jan. 23 accident in the Ellis Hospital parking lot. Lewis, who his attorney said has a drinking problem, also pleaded not guilty to a 10-count indictment accusing him of using a former girlfriend's computer to hack into his ex-wife's e-mail accounts. He has filed a notice of claim contending the city conspired with his ex-wife to get him fired. In December, Lewis suffered a stab wound in Massachusetts, allegedly at the hands of his girlfriend. He has not been on active duty with the Schenectady Police Department since March 2008 and is on unpaid suspension. During the two-day DWI trial, Assistant District Attorney Michael Tiffany argued that Lewis was out drinking all night on Dec. 26, 2008 and crashed his black SUV into a parked vehicle in the 1000 block of Eastern Avenue at around 4:30 a.m.Defense Attorney Michael Horan countered that prosecutors couldn't prove Lewis was drunk at the accident scene, noting he didn't take a Breathalyzer until four hours later. Meanwhile, an independent hearing officer who presided at an internal affairs disciplinary hearing will soon issue a decision that could result in his termination. In the past two years, Lewis has been arrested a half-dozen times on domestic violence and drunken driving charges. He also is facing charges stemming from a fight with his brother, also a police officer. Lewis' trouble with the department date back to 1998, when an arbitrator reversed his firing over his use of a racial slur at the police station. Paul Nelson can be reached at 454-5347 or by e-mail at email@example.com.