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Letter: Constantine rose to top with honor, intelligence

Constantine rose to top with honor, intelligence

I met Thomas A. Constantine when he was a state trooper before I became district attorney of Erie County in 1974. Of all the young men in Western New York in those days who became state police officers, he was extraordinary.

He had a sense of purpose and grounding that was unusual for someone so intelligent. Constantine showed so marvelously as he rose from the ranks to become superintendent of the New York State Police in 1986.

He was appointed director of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration in 1994 by President Bill Clinton. Constantine taught at the State University at Albany. The British Government appointed him to lead police reform in Northern Ireland. And he was a senior member of the U.S. Office of National Intelligence, which was established after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

His concern was always with police civility and the rectitude a democracy expects from its police. It would be a great good if we had his words today.

Of all the splendid law enforcement officers this community has produced, Constantine was perhaps the very best.

Edward C. Cosgrove

Attorney at Law