Ossining Police Department officer Emily Hirshowitz reported receiving threatening texts from various numbers to the Westchester District Attorney’s Office on May 4th, 2022.
The criminal complaint by Hirshowitz was that her colleagues at her department were the perpetrators.
The investigation showed that the officer was sending the threats to herself.
On Wednesday, Hirshowitz, 36, had been charged with seven counts, including third-degree fraudulently reporting and first-degree submission of a false instrument. She is facing felony charges of submitting a fake document intending to deceive.
In subsequent accusations from July and August, she allegedly provided investigators with images of lengthy, profanity-laced text messages she said were received on her phone from coworkers.
The terms used in the texts included “reject,” “dumb [bleep],” and “useless.”
The DA has been urged to investigate the matter further by her supervisors, and other local officials concerned that the threats were increasingly escalating.
Then, abruptly, Hirshowitz informed authorities on August 12 that she no longer wished to pursue the issue. But detectives, on August 23, at the behest of Police Chief Kevin Sylvester, summoned a conference of all department heads to review the subject.
Even the mayor of Ossining and other city officials were invited to the meeting.
In October 2022, investigators sought a search warrant for Hirshowitz’s phone and digital accounts after suspecting she was the sender. Prosecutors suspected she issued the threats to herself since they found evidence linking her to many numbers that had sent messages.
Although many of the digits pointed to Hirshowitz, not all did. In the criminal complaint, prosecutors claimed, without providing evidence, that a second number was traced to an individual known to the District Attorney’s Office. Hirshowitz received three texts from that number.
Louis Rinaldi, a former Ossining police officer who resigned earlier this year on unrelated disciplinary charges, is suspected of being Hirshowitz’s partner in the crime.
His name came up multiple times throughout the inquiry, and his lawyer confirmed that he was being looked at.
Suspended while still being paid, Hirshowitz is due in White Plains City Court on July 12.