Virtual Event: Timothy Sini – Suffolk County District Attorney
October 8, 2021 @ 9:00 am - 10:00 am EDT
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Timothy D. Sini was elected as the Suffolk County District Attorney on November 7, 2017 and assumed office on January 1, 2018. District Attorney Sini immediately began a comprehensive review of the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office with the objectives of creating a culture of excellence, professionalism and ethical conduct, while launching cutting edge, 21st Century strategies to address the public safety issues of our time. District Attorney Sini is committed to creating a culture of compliance with the highest ethical standards, including creating the first ever Conviction Integrity Bureau in Suffolk County, investing in new training programs for prosecutors and instituting smart prosecutions through the robust collection and analysis of data. The overall mission is to make the Office the best it can be, seek justice in each and every case, and ensure the safety and wellbeing of the great residents of Suffolk County.
To this end, thus far, District Attorney Sini has made over 250 personnel decisions, recruited top talent at all levels to the Office, overhauled the Office’s training program, implemented smart criminal justice policies, created new Bureaus to address the public safety issues of our time, and dramatically increased the Office’s productivity. District Attorney Sini, as promised during this campaign, has focused the Office on aggressively addressing the drug epidemic, eradicating violent street gangs such as MS-13, combating the scourge of illegal dumping and other environmental crimes that threaten our environment and public health, effectively confronting human trafficking, and holding public officials accountable for their misdeeds. The results speak for themselves:
- the Office has launched a record number of large-scale investigations and prosecutions of high-level drug traffickers and violent gang members, with a focus on utilizing advanced technology to initiate and enhance strategic prosecutions, all with the objective of reducing crime in Suffolk County and the region; crime levels in Suffolk County have been reduced to record lows;
- the Office has created new diversion programs to encourage and facilitate defendants to accept treatment for their substance use disorder, including the C.A.R.E. program and DOORS program;
- the Office created a Gang Unit designed to exclusively investigate and prosecute gang members, such as MS-13, which is staffed with specially trained prosecutors and investigators;
- the Office has formed new partnerships with federal law enforcement to effectively target drug dealers and gang members operating in Suffolk County and beyond;
- the Office brought the largest ever illegal dumping case in New York State’s history and convened a Special Grand Jury, which issued a report regarding how to more effectively prevent and prosecute environmental crime in Suffolk County. Several of the recommendations were adopted by the New York State Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo in 2020;
- the Office created a dedicated team of professionals consisting of prosecutors, law enforcement, social workers, healthcare professionals, and not-for-profits to protect girls and women from human trafficking and bring justice to their perpetrators, which has resulted in a dramatic increase in human trafficking prosecutions;
- In collaboration with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, indicted 11 union officials on racketeering, fraud, and bribery offenses for allegedly accepting bribes to corruptly influence the construction industry in New York;
- the Office created a cutting-edge Conviction Integrity Bureau to ensure that no defendant is or has been wrongfully convicted. In 2019, the Bureau launched an investigation resulting in the exoneration of an individual who spent 33 years in prison for a murder he did not commit;
- the Office has implemented a vertical prosecution model to create a better work product for the community, victims and defendants;
- the Office is taking steps to become entirely paperless, including the implementation of digital case management and evidence management systems;
- the Office has implemented a new Voluntary Disclosure Policy designed to ensure compliance with all of our legal and ethical obligations, remove gamesmanship from the criminal justice system, and further our mission of seeking the truth through a fair and just process; and
- the Office has partnered with the National Guard to create a Crime Strategies Unit to collect, analyze and disseminate criminal intelligence to strategically target individuals who are driving crime, with the objective of enhancing public safety in Suffolk County.
Much has been accomplished already, but it is only the beginning.
Prior to District Attorney Sini’s election, he served as the 13th Commissioner of the Suffolk County Police Department, which is the 11th largest police department in the nation. As Police Commissioner, District Attorney Sini restored integrity to the leadership of the Police Department, reduced crime to the lowest level in recorded history, improved community relations, and enhanced the efficiency and effectiveness of the Department through improving processes and investing in technology.
As Police Commissioner, District Attorney Sini enhanced the Department’s intelligence-led policing model and made collaborating with the Department’s law enforcement and community partners a cornerstone of his administration. During Sini’s tenure as Police Commissioner, crime was reduced to historic levels, with violent crime decreasing more than 15% and overall crime decreasing over 12%. District Attorney Sini brought the fight against the violent street gang MS-13 to the national stage by making it a top priority of the Department. Through a multi-pronged strategy, the Suffolk County Police Department made well over 300 arrests of MS-13 gang members in just over one year and launched innovative community intervention strategies to prevent vulnerable children from becoming involved with gangs. District Attorney Sini testified before the United States Senate and House of Representatives regarding MS-13 and successfully lobbied the Department of Justice for additional resources to combat MS-13 in Suffolk County, including a $500,000 grant, which was awarded after President Donald J. Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions visited Suffolk County on two separate occasions. District Attorney Sini also launched several new community intervention programs, including the innovative Preventing Incarceration Via Opportunities for Treatment (PIVOT) Program, an alternative to arrest program whereby the Suffolk County Police Department connects those suffering from drug addiction to treatment.
District Attorney Sini also made homeland security a top priority, launching a number of initiatives including the SCPD Shield Program, a private public partnership to decrease Suffolk County’s vulnerability to terrorism, active shooter scenarios and street crime. District Attorney Sini also rolled out new technology to enhance the Department’s capabilities in fighting crime, including a new, award-winning intelligence-led policing platform. In addition, District Attorney Sini launched a number of initiatives to increase the efficiency of the patrol division, allowing officers to spend more time engaged in proactive police work and community policing, and significantly reformed the Police Department’s Internal Affairs Bureau, making it more accountable and responsive to community concerns.
District Attorney Sini serves as a representative on the White House’s Office of Drug Control Policy New York/New Jersey Regional HIDTA Team, where he assists in creating strategies between public health and public safety agencies to reduce opioid overdoses in the region. District Attorney Sini is also the Chairman of the Suffolk County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, which consists of all the stakeholders in Suffolk County’s criminal justice system.
District Attorney Sini is a graduate of the FBI’s National Executive Institute, an elite training program for law enforcement’s national leaders, and a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government’s Executive Education program. He is also an adjunct professor at Touro Law Center where he teaches a course on contemporary issues in policing and prosecution and a course on criminal law.
Prior to his appointment as Police Commissioner, District Attorney Sini served as the Assistant Deputy County Executive for Public Safety in the administration of Suffolk County Executive Steven Bellone. In this role, he spearheaded numerous public safety initiatives, including an innovative drug treatment program targeting Suffolk County inmates and releasees, as well as an evidence-based gang prevention program targeting children as early as the third grade. Both programs received National Association of Counties (NACo) awards. He also led the effort, in collaboration with the Suffolk County Sheriff, to lift the unfunded state mandate to build a third jail in Suffolk County by developing a plan to further invest in alternative to arrest programs.
District Attorney Sini started his career in law enforcement as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York where he served under U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. District Attorney Sini specialized in investigating and prosecuting violent crimes, including homicides, gang related activity and large scale narcotics cases. As a federal prosecutor, he prosecuted hundreds of violent gang members, hitmen, drug traffickers, corrupt doctors and pharmacists, and much more. Prior to serving as an Assistant United States Attorney, District Attorney Sini practiced law in the private sector and served as a law clerk for the Honorable William C. Conner, a federal district court judge in the Southern District of New York, and the Honorable Chester J. Straub, a federal appeals court judge in the Second Circuit.
Sini is a magna cum laude graduate of both Brooklyn Law School where he earned his Juris Doctor and American University in Washington, D.C. where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a minor in Justice. He resides in Babylon Village with his wife, Amanda, and their three children.