Police, fire and Bethlehem town officials gathered Thursday afternoon outside the town hall for a walkout ceremony retiring Police Chief Louis Corsi.
Commander Adam Hornick congratulated longtime Bethlehem Police Chief Louis Corsi after Corsi walked out of headquarters for the last time.
"Chief Corsi's a 41-year law enforcement professional serving the last 17 years as chief of police to this community. His support, dedication and knowledge in the law enforcement profession goes second to none. It's different to replace that institutional knowledge when 41 years walks out the door. But the community can be assured that we will continue to serve to the best of our ability. Chief Corsi is a true professional and always has been."
On the Albany County town’s force since 1985 and chief since 2003, the 62-year old Corsi began his career in 1979 with the Town of Coeymans Police Department, then transferred to the Albany County Sheriff’s Department in 1981, before landing in Bethlehem, where he was promoted to sergeant in 1987, lieutenant in 1999, and Deputy Chief in 2002. In 2003 he became the town’s seventh chief.
"You know we accomplished some great things over the years. The foundation is firm that the department stands on, it will continue to grow. These are excellent officers. We're community oriented."
I asked Corsi what he considered the most memorable part of his career.
"Probably what the department went through with the Porco investigation. That was a very trying time, very long investigation. I can't even tell you the hours we put into that."
Christopher Porco was convicted in 2006 of second-degree murder and second-degree attempted murder in connection with the death of his father and the severe wounding and disfigurement of his mother, Joan Porco, in their Delmar home. The case garnered national attention.
In September 2009, Corsi was suspended 10 days without pay for making a racially offensive remark three years earlier in a recorded conversation with another police official regarding media leaks during the Porco trial.
Corsi says he plans to relax for a little while and take retirement one step at a time. Hornick says the town is working on hiring a new chief. He is among three candidates under consideration for the post.