Singas’ experience fit for Schneiderman probe, Cuomo says

Singas’ experience fit for Schneiderman probe, Cuomo says
Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance, from left, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas and Suffolk County District Attorney Tim Sini discuss the start of the Eric Schneiderman investigation. (Photo courtesy of the office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo)

Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas began her legal career in 1991 at the Queens district attorney’s office, where she was a founding member of the domestic violence bureau.

More than two and a half decades later, the Manhasset resident will lead an investigation into allegations of domestic violence raised against one of New York state’s top law enforcement officials – recently resigned Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that Singas would lead the probe last Tuesday, and at a news conference a few days later he touted her background in this area.

“I have total confidence in her ability to do everything she can do to make sure justice is sure and swift,” Cuomo said.

After a New Yorker article in which four of Schneiderman’s ex-girlfriends allege he beat them, often drunk and in bed, the former attorney general resigned within hours.

Schneiderman denies the allegations.

Singas said during the news conference she will treat this case as she has all others in her 27-year career as a prosecutor,

No stone will be left unturned, she said.

“I have overseen in my career as a prosecutor thousands of cases involving domestic violence, involving assaults, involving sexual abuses,” Singas said. “I’m very well versed in this area of law. And I intend to bring that integrity to this case as I do all cases.”

Singas has spent the bulk of her career as a voice for vulnerable victims, she said.

Helping them has become her passion, she said.

“And I continue to do it every day because helping just one person make a difference in their life, helping one person leave an abusive relationship, is more gratifying than any work that I have ever done,” Singas said.

Following her domestic violence work in Queens, in 2006 Singas moved to the Nassau district attorney’s office, then under control of current U.S. Rep. Kathleen Rice, to start the first special victims bureau for the county.

Rice, who some Democrats said last week was considering a run for attorney general in the November election, said in a statement on Tuesday that she would not seek the office.

Singas has also said that she does not plan on running for the post and is focused on the current investigation.

She has assembled a team that together has more than 125 years of experience in these matters, Singas said.

At the news conference Cuomo and Singas were joined by Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy Sini and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance.

Along with Singas’ expertise in the area, Cuomo said she was chosen to lead the investigation over Vance to avoid the perception of a conflict of interest.

Vance’s office is currently leading the investigation into allegations raised against Harvey Weinstein. Schneiderman had been looking into how Vance’s office was handling the Weinstein case.

“Emotions are high, feelings are high, suspicion is high, it’s very important that we do what we do right and fairly without raising any perception issues whatsoever,” Cuomo said.

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