NYPD Officials Booted for Being Too Drunk to Fly to Afghanistan for Training Trip

New York Police Department Chief of Counterterrorism James Waters.

Six-high ranking officials at the NYPD had to cancel a trip to Afghanistan last week after two cops were booted from their military flight over concerns they were too drunk to fly.

The elite cops were on their way to the war-torn country for a weeklong trip to teach NYPD counterterrorism and crimefighting tactics to soldiers who train Afghan officers, a police source said.

The group included Chief of Counterterrorism James Waters; Lt. Chris Zimmerman, commander of the hostage negotiation team; Deputy Chief Scott Shanley, head of the department’s Critical Response Command, and Counterterrorism Capt. Daniel Magee.

After the brass got to Baltimore-Washington International Airport, they were told the Army chartered plane was delayed by three hours, sources told The News.

They went to a restaurant, got dinner and downed cocktails while waiting, a police official characterized their alcohol intake as “a few” drinks.

The group was not armed, sources said.

When the officers boarded the Kabul-bound plane — along with about 200 other passengers — members of the jet crew raised questions about whether Shanley and Magee were sober enough to take the 14-hour flight, sources told The News.

One police source said the six cops argued with the crew — Magee particularly loudly — but a police official said there was only a “discussion” between the two groups.

“There was no argument,” the source said. “(Waters) spoke to the crew. There’s a feeling that the crew kind of overreacted.”

After that, Waters decided all of the officers had to deplane.

“They all left because they had set up a training program and all of them needed to be in Afghanistan to do it,” the police source said.

The cops had to come back to the city, sources said.

“Look, no one feels good about it, but they are still going to do it probably in October,” a police official said.

Under Department of Defense regulations, passengers may be denied boarding or transport if they are unruly, under the influence of drugs or alcohol that may create a hazard or disruptive.

Deputy Commissioner Stephen Davis, a police spokesman, said the NYPD is looking into the Aug. 10 incident.

“I am aware of no misconduct that occurred,” said Roy Richter, president of the NYPD Captains Endowment Association. “This was a training operation that has been delayed and will be rescheduled sometime in the future.”

Waters, who spent Thursday checking on counterterrorism preparations after the attack in Barcelona, could not be reached for comment.

Shanley and Zimmerman did not return phone messages. There was no answer on Magee’s line.

The Pentagon could not provide any information on the incident Thursday.

Source: http://www.nydailynews.com