Volpe’s Return Spurs Angry Blast By MICHAEL O. ALLEN, Daily News Staff Writer

Sunday, September 7, 1997

Lawyers for alleged police torture victim Abner Louima yesterday criticized city officials for allowing the central suspect in the 70th Precinct scandal to return to police duty.

Officer Justin Volpe, accused of sodomizing Louima with a stick, will return to modified duty this week. That means he has been stripped of his gun and badge, and will work at a desk job.

Under civil service law, cops cannot be suspended without pay for more than 30 days.

“It is shocking, it is unfair, it is morally unacceptable that while Abner Louima continues to languish in his hospital bed, the man who stands indicted for putting him there can be allowed to return to business as usual,” said Vladimir Rodney, a spokesman for the Haitian-American Alliance.

The Rev. Al Sharpton and Carl Thomas, Louima’s lead attorney, said that Mayor Giuliani and Police Commissioner Howard Safir should have taken steps to prevent the return of the officers, and that they should not hide behind provisions of the police union contract.