Police: Off-duty parole officer fired at police officer from bed
By Mike Murphy firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted at 2:35 PM
Updated at 2:58 PM
CANANDAIGUA — After calling 911 for an ambulance, Canandaigua Police Sgt. Scott Kadien re-entered the bedroom of off-duty state parole officer Sandy Guardiola and saw movement on the bed.
Kadien saw her display a weapon and then made verbal contact with her, according to State Police Capt. Carolyn Mullin, who on Friday provided these and more details of the Oct. 4 incident that started with a routine call and ended with the death of a 20-year law enforcement veteran.
″‘Don’t, Sandy, don’t,’” said Mullin, relating to reporters the words said just before Guardiola discharged her weapon.
“Sgt. Kadien took cover by the bedroom door. And again, gave her verbal commands to not pick up the weapon,” Mullin said. “She again raised her weapon at which point, Officer Kadien felt in fear for his life and he fired the weapon.”
These and other details were released Friday morning, a day before the Guardiola’s family, accompanied by civil rights activist the Rev. Al Sharpton, were to speak at a press conference at the National Action Network’s House of Justice in Harlem.
State Police announced Friday the completion of a preliminary investigation into the incident involving Kadien, a 15-year veteran and part-time Wayne County assistant district attorney who was identified two weeks after the Oct. 4 incident as the police officer involved in the shooting, and Guardiola.
Mullin said police on Friday reached out to Guardiola’s family, to advise them of the results of the investigation.
“In my opinion, this has nothing to do with race. This was an officer going to check on the welfare of an officer,” Mullin said. “I know the family is very upset, as well they should be.”
The Beldock Levine & Hoffman LLP firm, which is listed on the press release announcing the family would be speaking, did not respond to two requests for comment.
Guardiola, who was out on medical leave after a Sept. 4 car accident in the Southern Tier, had been assigned to Rochester and was scheduled to work that day, Oct. 4, in Binghamton, but did not report, Mullin said.
Toxicology results won’t be available for five months, Mullin said.
Her medical condition at the time of the incident, the results of the crash and the impact medications may have played are among a number of questions that still need answers before rushing to a grand jury, said Ontario County First Assistant District Attorney Jim Ritts.
“I think Sandy Guardiola’s family is due that respect and Scott Kadien is due that respect,” Ritts said. “We need to respect the integrity of the process and allow this to play through. It’s painful when we talk about five months, so we’ve got to work as it relates to that.”
After returning from administrative leave, Kadien is working in an administrative role in the department.
Guardiola was a 48-year-old Puerto Rican mother of two and a two-time breast cancer survivor, according to a release from a New York City law firm that appears to be representing her family.
Mullin said Guardiola had worked 20 years at Rikers Island and rose to the rank of captain before she left to attend college and become a social worker.
Guardiola had worked for the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision since May 2015. She had moved from the New York City area about a year ago.
Police were initially called to Guardiola’s apartment at 4:15 p.m. Oct. 4 after staff there had received a call from a fellow parole officer that she had not returned to work.
Mullin said a “check on the welfare” call is considered routine by law enforcement and any police officer has responded to these types of calls multiple times, including occasions when forced entries into residences are required.
Kadien, accompanied by two Pinnacle North employees, knocked on her door after such a report, Mullin said. He told Guardiola that it was the Canandaigua Police Department and identified himself, Mullin said.
No one answered, so they gained access to the apartment with a key fob, Mullin said. Kadien checked the apartment, found no one inside but saw the bedroom door was closed.
Kadien knocked on the door, again identified himself and called her name, Mullin said, but no one answered.
After entering the bedroom, Kadien, who was in full uniform, could see Guardiola laying in bed with pillows around her head. Kadien received no response when he asked if she needed medical attention, Mullin said.
“The officer says he made eye contact with Sandy, her mouth was moving, but she was not talking,” Mullin said. “That’s why he called for an ambulance.”
After leaving the room to call for an ambulance, he returned to the bedroom and, according to Mullin, saw Guardiola display her weapon.
After he said, “Don’t, Sandy, don’t’,” Guardiola then fired, forcing Kadien to take cover by the bedroom door. The shot exited the apartment through a wall, a little distance away from Kadien, Mullin said. He was not hit.
Hedworth said the incident took place in a confined space in a small apartment.
Again, Kadien gave her verbal commands to not pick up the weapon, Mullin said.
“She again raised the weapon at which point, Officer Kadien felt in fear for his life and he fired his weapon,” Mullin said.
Guardiola was struck in the abdomen, arm and ear and treated at the scene, but later was pronounced dead at UR Medicine Thompson Health.
Canandaigua Police Chief Stephen Hedworth said at the press conference Friday that Kadien was trained to do what he did and “acted appropriately” that day, as “he was in fear for his life.”
“As far as the number of shots, there’s no person who can say what was the appropriate number of shots,” said Hedworth, responding to questioning.
“It’s tragic what happened. But we all have to remember, Sgt. Kadien is a human being, like any human being,” Hedworth said. “He’s going to react like any human being. Just because he wears a blue uniform doesn’t absolve him of all of his feelings and emotions.”
The details emerged from evidence at the scene and interviews with Kadien and the two employees, who were outside the apartment when the shots were fired but could hear the officer and the weapons discharge, Mullin said, adding their accounts match up.
Hedworth said two lives were changed that day forever.
“My heart went out to Sandy’s family from day one, and it still does,” Hedworth said. “The same way my heart goes out to Sgt. Scott Kadien. I know what he’s going to go though the rest of his life. I think people tend to forget that, just because he wears a blue uniform and carries a gun.”