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Port Authority chairman accused of thwarting sister’s police career

A New Jersey police officer has accused her brother – the powerful chair of the Port of New York and New Jersey – of sabotaging her request for promotion, a new lawsuit has revealed.

Eileen O’Toole, a Cedar Grove officer since 2004, claims she was on track to become the department’s top police officer until her brother, Kevin O’Toole, a former New Jersey Republican senator, asked for one family dispute in November.

Eileen — who has served as the troupe’s deputy chief since 2020 — told NBC New York she was “100% positive.”

The siblings fell out the night before Eileen’s daughter’s wedding, and two months later, Tucci told her she wouldn’t get the permanent gig, according to her lawsuit filed in Essex County Superior Court on Tuesday.

Eileen O'Toole.
Eileen O’Toole files a lawsuit against her brother Kevin O’Toole, claiming he is the reason she was not promoted.
NBC4 New York

According to the lawsuit, which targets the community and does not name Kevin as a defendant, her duties have since been significantly reduced.

“I knew my brother could reach Mr. Tucci, but I just didn’t think they would go that far on a personal issue, something I’ve worked so hard on for over 23 years,” Eileen told NBC , which first reported the suit.

“His way of punishing me was to hurt my career.”

Kevin O'Toole
Kevin O’Toole’s sister is ‘100% sure’ he was the reason she was passed over for the job.
NBC4 New York

Her brother, a former mayor of Cedar Grove, was appointed Chair of the Port Authority Board by former Governor Chris Christie in 2017, remaining in that capacity under Governor Phil Murphy.

After the argument before the wedding, the port chef reportedly told guests assigned to his table to skip the event entirely, the lawsuit said – prompting “several guests” to leave “abruptly”.

His family stories didn’t stop with Eileen. Her father, Robert O’Toole, who is also a former mayor of Cedar Grove, told NBC that his son stopped dropping groceries for his homebound elderly mother after the wedding spat.

Process documents by Eilien O'Toole
The political family’s dirty laundry was brought to light in an interview O’Toole conducted with NBC New York.
NBC4 New York

“Never seen or heard from him again. No breakfast, nothing for his mum,” said the chairman’s father, adding, “I think he’s a bad guy.”

O’Toole also sent text messages threatening to have his sister’s partner, Mike Kraynanski, a police officer in nearby Caldwell, investigated by his superiors, according to the lawsuit.

He also defended his involvement in a local real estate development.

“Eileen I have every job and you can’t take credit for it,” O’Toole wrote, according to the Suit. “[T]Its outbreak will require a common law psychological evaluation for you and your current wife.

“I have the right to invest in any property I want and make no apologies for making money for my family,” he wrote.

A Cedar Grove community attorney called the gender discrimination charges “frivolous.”

Messages between members of the O'Toole family surfaced amid Eileen O'Toole's lawsuit.
Messages between members of the O’Toole family surfaced amid Eileen O’Toole’s lawsuit.
NBC4 New York

“Township manager Thomas Tucci selected the most qualified candidate for the post of police chief and was not influenced by anyone during the selection process,” attorney Matthew Giacobbe said in a statement. “The community and community manager Tucci look forward to vigorously defending this frivolous lawsuit and will be seeking fees and costs.”

Kevin O’Toole defended Tucci’s “stewardship, commitment to public service and independence” in an email to The Post.

He said the family feud stemmed in part from “vaccination policies” and “politics” and that he was a “victim of harassment/stalking” as a result.

“Some of us (including myself and my immediate family) believe everyone should be vaccinated, while others in my family have very strong anti-vaccination sentiments,” O’Toole wrote. “Without going into detail, some time ago I asked the Essex County Attorney’s Office for assistance alleging that I was a victim of harassment/stalking. Protecting my wife and two children is my most sacred priority.”

https://nypost.com/2022/07/20/port-authority-chair-accused-of-thwarting-sisters-police-career/ Port Authority chairman accused of thwarting sister’s police career

JACLYN DIAZ

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