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Buffalo Police give update on investigation into Lt. Craig Lehner's death

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - This afternoon Buffalo Police Captain Jeff Rinaldo spoke to the media regarding an investigation into the death of Lt. Craig Lehner. 

Police received a copy of a report from the state's Department of Public Employee Safety and Health (PESH) showing no clear standards for police dive teams other than a public safety diving exemption that already exists. 

PESH consulted with diving experts, police diving instructors as well as OSHA, who oversee industrial accidents for private sector employees to determine police dive teams have to comply with commercial diving standards that exist on the private sector side.

Rinaldo says the PESH report included four serious and one non-serious violation by Buffalo Police. A good number of these dealing with paperwork, record keeping, documentation and establishment of training procedures specific to the Niagara River, where Lehner's body was found in October of 2017. 

Police are being given 60 days, or longer if necessary, to comply with and rectify these deficiencies. 

Many of these violations were addressed before the report, according to Rinaldo.

He noted Buffalo Police expect to be in full compliance within the allotted time frame and will begin to submit proposed changes to PESH for approval as soon as next week.


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