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Many Syracuse cops to skip St. Patrick's Parade over brewing tension with new chief


Officers in the Syracuse Police Department are refusing to march in the annual St. Patrick’s Parade on Saturday, citing tensions with the newly hired chief, Kenton Buckner.


It’s the most outwardly visible sign yet of discord between new department brass and the rank-and-file, and a public display of the challenges an out-of-town chief faces as he tries to overhaul an institution notoriously averse to change.


Jeff Piedmonte, president of the Syracuse Police Benevolent Association, said this isn’t a union decision and he hesitated to call it a boycott.


Unlike past years, the union is not participating in the parade, nor is it organizing officer involvement or doing things like providing green ties or orange boutonnieres.


Another 50 officers work security, blocking streets, handling crowd control and policing a busy bar scene in Armory Square.


At a Thursday Morning Roundtable meeting last month, Buckner acknowledged that there are some “bad officers” in the department who will receive additional training and discipline.






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