Vito Fossella Hires OJ's and Gotti's Private Eyes
Down-and-out Rep. Vito Fossella (R-N.Y.) has hired two private detectives to help him beat his drunk driving charge, which he plans to fight in court in Alexandria, Va., on June 27.
As first reported in the New York Daily News today, Fossella has hired the very same gumshoes who once worked for the likes of O.J. Simpson, Patty Hearst and mafia boss John Gotti. The private eyes, James Harkins and John McNally, have been spotted interviewing patrons and workers at the Logan Tavern, where Fossella and a drinking buddy were kicked out late on April 30, not long before Fossella was pulled over -- across the river, in Alexandria -- after midnight.
The Staten Island congressman's defense attorney, Barry Pollack, wouldn't discuss the private eyes but told the Sleuth today he and his team are "talking to as many eyewitnesses as possible" to fight the DWI charge.
"We continue to believe that there is reason to question the results of the breathalizer test," Pollack tells us. Pollack claims eyewitnesses who were with Fossella that allegedly drunken night "who know what he consumed and how he was acting have a very different view than the police."
Fossella, whose political career is over, at least in the short term, faces a mandatory five days in jail for his DWI, which led to the disclosure of the married congressman's secret mistress and "love child." Police say his blood-alcohol content was more than twice Virginia's legal limit.
Pollack says he plans to fight the results of the breathalizer test that was administered to the Staten Island congressman at the Mount Vernon, Va., police station, some three hours after he was pulled over for running a red light. That test was the fourth administered to Fossella. Police gave him a field breathalizer test, which registered at about 1.3, then took him to Alexandria, where the machine wasn't working. Fossella was then taken to Mount Vernon, where a first test was deemed inconclusive and a second registered his blood-alcohol content as 1.7.
Fossella was picked up later at the Alexandria, Va., station by his long-time mistress, Laura Fay, the mother of Fossella's 3-year-old daughter. (Fossella, a Christian conservative, has three children with his wife, Mary Pat.)
The Daily News quotes Alexandria Commonwealth Attorney Randolph Sengel as calling Fossella's hiring of two famous private detectives to fight his misdemeanor DWI charge "pretty unusual." And he joked, "I consider this a pretty straightforward case. I'm not going to assign a homicide prosecutor to it."
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