WEST NEW YORK AND BEYOND – West New York Commissioner County Wiley was escorted out of 5701 Park Ave. on July 31 after residents said Wiley and 14 others had been allegedly knocking on doors soliciting petitions, according to a police report.
Wiley has been in the news lately because he has gone on the record as saying he would like to recall and then replace current Mayor Felix Roque, who was arrested by the FBI in the spring for allegedly hacking into an opponent's website. One of Wiley's supporters was also attacked physically over the weekend, according to an earlier story (see links below).
According to the police report on the July 31 Wiley incident, at around 6 p.m., police responded to the 15th floor, where they discovered Wiley and the others allegedly in the hallway. The building manager told officers the residence was private property and that there is no soliciting allowed, and that she would have them arrested if they did not leave, the report said.
Sgt. Thomas Rivera informed Wiley he had to leave, at which point Wiley was allegedly “very disrespectful and argumentative” and allegedly stated that the police were harassing him, according to the report. He also said that as commissioner, he can go anywhere he wants, the report said.
Wiley then allegedly refused to leave, at which point officers insisted he would have to or he would be arrested for trespassing, the report continued.
Wiley told the Reporter Thursday morning that the petition was against the town’s proposed ordinance that would allow massage parlors to be certified and open businesses in the town, and that the claim that he was disrespectful was untrue.
“If I’d been disrespectful I would have been arrested,” Wiley said. “I’ve been campaigning all over town about this matter because it’s my responsibility as commissioner to reach out to the community about something that would be harmful to them, and the reality is that most people don’t know about it.”
According to the police report, Wiley then was escorted to the lobby where the manager met him and the officers and informed him he could not solicit in a private building but could make an appointment with building management about his concerns, the report states.
Wiley then allegedly said he would get a town ordinance passed forcing management to hire a security guard for the building, the report claims.
“This is a tax abated building receiving a benefit from the town for over 30 years,” Wiley said Thursday. “I don’t have the right to be there? All I was doing was my job acting as a commissioner; I should have the right to go anywhere in the community I wish to go.”
He added, “They used to have a security guard here and the town has received complaints. I calmly spoke with the manager and told her she needed to look out for the safety of the residents in her building.”
After a brief meeting with the manager and a tenant, Wiley said, he left the building.
“I was very disappointed because I don’t expect my officers to be disrespected by anyone,” Police Director Michael Indri stated Thursday morning. “They don’t have to tolerate any disrespect or disorderly conduct like that from anyone.” -- Gennarose Pope