BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The State Liquor Authority says it is against the law for off-duty police officers to be working security at bars.
Through an email, a spokesperson cited state Alcohol Beverage Control law, noting officers can’t be “either directly or indirectly interested in the manufacture or sale of alcoholic beverages or to offer for sale…”
While not explicitly stated, the spokesperson says this means the state prohibits off-duty police officers from being paid by the bar, or a security company that is hired by the bar.
According to the SLA, police officers are allowed to work in and around a licensed bar if they are on-duty. That would mean they are working for and being paid directly by the police department.
When Bill Sager was pushed down a flight of stairs on Sunday, May 11, sources say two off-duty Buffalo police officers were working security inside the bar.
That is against Buffalo Police department protocol.
The department allows off-duty police officers to work security outside bars. While working outside, they are not being paid by the Buffalo Police Department.
The Buffalo Police Department has allowed officers to work outside bars, while off-duty.
Police sources tell News 4’s Ed Drantch that policy may soon change. Sources say they are considering banning off-duty security work at bars.
An update to official department policy has not been released.