A disgraced detective convicted earlier this year of perjuring himself about a drug arrest in south Queens that left a man in jail for 51 days has avoided being sent to prison himself.
Detective Kevin Desormeau, 34, who was assigned to the NYPD Gang Unit, was found guilty on Jan. 24 of first-degree perjury, official misconduct and making a punishable false written statement on the criminal complaint filed with the court.
On April 4, a spokesperson for Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said, Judge Michael Aloise sentenced Desormeau to serve three years’ probation and pay a fine of $500. Desormeau had been looking at up to seven years in jail for the perjury conviction.
Brown’s office disagreed with both the sentence and the judge’s preceding remarks about the victim in the case, who happens to also be a repeat criminal offender.
“While we respect Justice Aloise, we could not disagree with his comments more,” a spokesperson for Brown’s office said in a statement to QNS. “Our complainant was a career criminal – we acknowledged that. He acknowledged it. Kevin Desormeau was a New York City police detective. He should be and was held to a higher standard. He violated his oath and framed the complainant. The issue that the court cited was one we discovered during our investigation and fully disclosed to the defense well before trial and fully to the jury at the trial. We will not be deterred from pursuing bad cops by the court’s ill-advised comments. We stand by this prosecution. The defendant disgraced New York’s Finest.”
Desormeau and his partner, Detective Sasha Neve, were indicted in March 2017 for making false statements that led to the arrest of a man in south Queens back in August of 2014. The victim wound up spending 51 days on Rikers Island, but was ultimately exonerated of all charges against him.
According to the indictment, Desormeau and Neve picked up the victim on the night of Aug. 28, 2014 for allegedly selling drugs at the corner of 108th Avenue and Guy R. Brewer Boulevard in South Jamaica. Desormeau claimed in a court affidavit that he had seen the man make a hand-to-hand exchange with an unapprehended woman. After taking the man into custody, he purportedly found the victim in possession of rock cocaine.
Desormeau wound up repeating that story before a grand jury in January of 2015, and at a court hearing on Nov. 5 of that year. He maintained that he saw the victim take part in a drug sale with two women, and that he recovered from him following his arrest the cocaine and $725 in cash.
After posting bail, the victim was released from Rikers Island — and subsequently contacted his attorney. The lawyer then contacted the Queens District Attorney’s office and presented it with security camera footage from a restaurant and bar near where the arrest occurred.
Brown said that the video showed the victim playing pool at the same time the purported drug transaction occurred. Desormeau was seen entering the location while the man was playing pool, then later escorting him out.