Rochester, N.Y. (WROC) — The Rochester Police Accountability Board (PAB) officially terminated Conor Dwyer Reynolds, the leader at the center of an investigation into the dysfunction at the PAB.

After a six-month investigation over claims of sexual harassment, retaliation, racial discrimination and overall poor leadership at the PAB, a 95-page report was released yesterday.

In summary, it said Dwyer Reynolds who was suspended in May is a legal risk to the city and PAB, and that he should be terminated as Executive Director. However, prior to the five to one vote on Thursday, some staff members pleaded with board members to instead fire Interim Leader Duwaine Bascoe and give Dwyer Reynolds his job back.

“We need to deal with the enemy. We know someone who has prior knowledge of the institution who can get the work running back on its feet quickly,” Secretary to the Board Marina Pacheco-Walker said. “We need somebody who can bring some resemblance of leadership back to this. I know what the report said. With regard to his leadership, we believe they are not strong enough to warrant his dismissal.”

Despite the pleas from staff, a majority of the board agreed to fire Dwyer Reynolds and begin the search for a permanent Executive Director. The PAB reported a second vote was taken to begin the search for an interim from outside of the PAB and to end Acting Manager Duwaine Bascoe’s term, as well as finding a permanent Executive Director for the agency.

The members voted seven to zero. Interim leader Duwaine Bascoe will resume the role as Chief Investigator down the line.

Board members Drorah Setel and Mathew Nickoloff did not vote because Reynolds threatened to file a lawsuit against the PAB, claiming those two board members could not make an objective vote.

“Tonight, the PAB’s union demanded my reinstatement. The Board rejected their demand,” Dwyer Reynolds told News 8. “A PAB that disregards its workers is a PAB I don’t want to work for.”

FULL STATEMENT FROM BOARD CHAIR LARRY KNOX:

“After discussing the results of the third-party investigation, board members voted to
remove Mr. Dwyer-Reynolds as Executive Director of the Police Accountability Board.
The agency is committed to implementing the recommended changes outlined in the
report in order to strengthen the agency. Out of respect for those involved in the
investigation, we will not be commenting further on the specific statements or details
that were published. Our sincere hope is that we can begin to move forward and
continue the work that the people of Rochester have asked of us.”


“Tomorrow the board will initiate its transitional plan to find an Interim Executive Director
from outside the agency, at which time Duwaine Bascoe’s term as Acting Manager will
end. We will also begin our search for a permanent Executive Director.”