September 25, 2002


WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH DUNLEAVY?: Steve Dunleavy, the New York Post's perpetually half-in-the-bag columnist, must've hit the sauce even harder than usual when he wrote Monday's column, in which he lamented that his best buddy in the world, Charles Schwarz, is going back to jail. Schwarz, you see, was one of the four cops accused in the Abner Louima sexual assault of 1997; after two trials he was convicted of participating in the assault. Then this year he was briefly freed before getting re-indicted (and re-convicted), this time for perjury, and was about to be brought to trial a fourth time on two other charges when he reached a plea bargain with prosecutors last week in which he will likely serve 33 months of a five-year sentence. All the while, Dunleavy has been Schwarz's most ardent backer; after all, the boozy old Aussie never met a rogue cop he didn't love.
In his column Dunleavy wants to make sure everyone knows that Schwarz isn't a coward and isn't a rat, because "Schwarz made no deal- the deal was [made by] prosecutor Alan Vinegrad." So since the deal was initiated by Vinegrad, Schwarz wasn't part of it and is thus absolved of responsibility for it? BOTH SIDES made the deal, you numbscull! That's why it's called a deal!
Now I'm in no position to judge Schwarz's innocence or guilt, but what is Dunleavy doing praising the defendant's wherewithal when he agreed to serve five more years for a crime he says he didn't commit? He ends the column with "true to his code as a former Marine, Chuck never cracked - Semper Fi." But wouldn't "not cracking" have entailed fighting the charges and refusing to accept any plea deal at all?
The problem with Dunleavy's columns is usually that they're off morally (like when he claimed that John Gotti was a great man "'cause he didn't steal people's money like Enron did"); this time, it's his logic that's completely wrong. I don't know if it's senility or alcoholism, but it might be time for his editors to step in and suggest retirement. Besides, with Gotti dead and Skakel and Schwarz both in the can, Dunleavy's running out of things to write about.

Posted by Stephen Silver at September 25, 2002 01:08 AM
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