City contractor loaning vehicles to police looks bad, say ethics experts

City contractor loaning vehicles to police looks bad, say ethics experts

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Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County- It may look bad and smell bad, but it's not enough for Wilkes-Barre Mayor Thomas Leighton to do anything about the city's towing contractor loaning high-end luxury vehicles to members of the police force. Earlier this week, L.A.G. Towing owner Leo Glodzik acknowledged he has loaned and sold vehicles to his friends, some of whom are police officers.

Without pointing to the city's ethics code or a department policy, Leighton essentially told the I-Team he was powerless to do anything about. Ethics experts and political scientists seized on his position.

"You should not be taking gifts," said Dr. David Sosar of King's College. "You should not be taking gratuities in whatever form, if you are an employee in the city or the county."

In challenging the mayor's position, Sosar said such provisions have nothing to do with any wrongdoing, rather the associated appearance of impropriety,

"It is one of perception. It's a perception of what doors does it open," said Sosar.

Chief Gerard Dessoye has ignored two-days' worth of requests for comment, both through a city spokesman and messages left at an information desk in the department. The department is under federal investigation, according to sources familiar with the case.

On Tuesday, Sgt. William Harden and Officer Joseph Sinavage attempted to cite Eyewitness News reporter Joe Holden, photographer Anthony Ingargiola and Times Leader reporter Terrie Morgan-Besecker. A city spokesman said Dessoye acknowledged members of his department shouldn't have impeded reporters while attempting to cover a story, despite what light it may have shed on the department. Sinavage initially told reporters they were being cited for trespassing for walking through a police alleyway.

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