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High School Coaches Apologize for False Accusations Against Onondaga Co. Deputy


In cooperation with the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office, the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office has secured three public apologies from the two Buffalo coaches, Stevenson McDuffie, Djuan Todd, and Assistant Athletic Director Michael House, who filed affidavits regarding physical abuse against a Sheriff Deputy during an altercation last November. The coaches accused Sheriff Deputy Luke Bickford of physically shaking Bennett’s head coach, Stevenson McDuffie, at a football game between Bennett High School (Buffalo, NY) and CBA (Syracuse, NY).

Sheriff Shelley immediately began an internal investigation into these allegations. Through multiple video and audio recordings and interviews of witnesses, these claims were determined to be 100% unfounded and not factual.  Not only did Deputy Bickford act professionally, as expected of a Sheriff Deputy, but he was also instrumental in de-escalating the heated situation.

Sheriff Shelley began a criminal case against the three coaches for filing false reports to internal affairs. The charges were handed over to the DA’s Office, and District Attorney William Fitzpatrick and Sheriff Shelley agreed that a public apology to Deputy Bickford was warranted. DA Fitzpatrick contacted the coaches, and an agreement was made. On March 25, the apologies were sent to the Sheriff’s Office and Deputy Bickford.

Sheriff Shelley: “We value our members and have confidence in their individual initiative and abilities. Our role is to defend the truth in our county for both our citizens and the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office staff.”

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