Judge denies city's request to dismiss Palumbo-Longo lawsuit

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - The federal case against the city of Utica, its Public safety commissioner and its mayor in connection to a murder-suicide involving a police officer and his wife will now move forward after a ruling by a Federal Court Judge.

U.S. District Judge David Hurd has ruled that Public Safety Commissioner Daniel LaBella and Utica Mayor David Roefaro played roles in putting Kristin Palumbo Longo at risk from her husband, Utica Police Investigator Joseph Longo.

Longo stabbed his wife, Kristin Palumbo-Longo more than a dozen times in their Cosby Manor Road home in Deerfield on September 28, 2009 before stabbing and killing himself.

Attorney John Dillon, who represents the Palumbo-Longo family has said that the Utica Police Department and then-Chief Daniel LaBella encouraged ongoing violent behavior from Investigator Longo, and failed to address growing concerns by Kristin Palumbo-Longo who contacted his supervisors on multiple occasions.

The lawsuit also alleges that Roefaro is also to blame, in part for his appointment of LaBella as Police Chief at the time. Judge Hurd said in the ruling that LaBella was "unqualified" for such an appointment.

The City of Utica had made a motion to have the case dismissed - a motion that Judge Hurd denied.

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