BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - In one week, a second Buffalo cop has been charged with disability fraud, as the feds continue their crackdown.
A recently retired police lieutenant is accused of collecting more than $600,000 - tax-free - by falsely claiming disability over seven years.
Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda said, "There are people out there and they deserve all the medical attention we can give them. They deserve all the medical attention we can give them, but the people out there who are playing games need to go and they need to go soon."
Both cops charged this week, Patrick O'Mara and Robert Quintana, are accused of claiming they're injured and reaping the benefits of the police's injured on duty program or IOD.
>> Quintana claimed to have hurt his back and backside in a slip on some ice and stayed on IOD status for seven years , racking up over $500,000 in IOD pay. Combined with O'Mara, that's over $1,000,000 allegedly fraudulently gained from taxpayers
FBI Special Agent In Charge Christopher Piehota said, "These individuals chose to do what they did they knew full well the risk and the consequence of their actions."
The criminal complaint claims O'Mara was on IOD for seven years, originally for straining his back, and then for an injury to his right arm - sustained by lifting two reams of paper. O'Mara claimed he was too injured to return to work, even light duty, yet he worked while on IOD as a church organist.
U.S. Attorney William Hochul said, "Now there are some questions as to the severity and in fact whether or not Mr. O'Mara was injured at all."
He retired from the police force on March 31st.
Derenda said, "There were leaks of an investigation months ago and we've had a lot of people up and retire out of no where."
Just two years ago, the national average number of IODs was at 3.4 percent. In Buffalo, the average was 17 percent. Last July, Commissioner Derenda was put in charge of bringing down that number. He started off with 123 IODs.
"You figure a $100,000 pension and salary per employee, if you figure it for 123, it's over $10 million in salary in benefits out the window," noted Derenda.
Keep in mind, Derenda says some of those officers are legitimately hurt. The commissioner has whittled down the IODs to 61 with 17 more on light duty. Derenda says ideally, the number should fall between 30-40.
He assured, "We will keep working and you may see more arrests in the very near future."
When confronted, FBI investigators say O'Mara thought of light duty as punishment and that there was no incentive to get off of IOD status.
"Mr. O'Mara's alleged to saying he could make more money staying at home where what he is receiving is tax-free. This is abuse of the taxpayers of this community," said Mayor Byron Brown.
O'Mara will be arraigned Friday at 11 a.m. in federal court for charges of mail and health care fraud.
A Buffalo Police vehicle was involved in a two-car crash around 8:40 a.m. Monday. The crash happened at Bailey and LaSalle Avenues.
A Buffalo city jail cell block attendant was arrested early Saturday morning on multiple animal cruelty charges.
An airman from Niagara Falls was away training for the Air Force for months. After being apart from his family, he decided to surprise them at Kelly’s Country Store in Grand Island.
Police say that with the assistance of local media, they were able to identify the person responsible.
Monday is being billed as a national "Day of Action" among teachers and community groups who are worried about the state of education.
Buffalo Police say a man was shot and killed Sunday night near Shirley and Suffolk Avenues. Police were called to the scene around 9 p.m