A 24-year-veteran of the NYPD lost a promotion Friday due to his involvement in a drunk driving hit-and-run with two other officers last month.
Lt. Vincent Molinini, Det. Christopher Corulla, and Det. Frank Muirhead were suspended after crashing into the front of the Hair-Do or Dye Salon on Arthur Kill Road on February 26 in Staten Island and then fleeing the scene.
The officers spent the night at the Rookie Sports Bar celebrating Molinini’s recent promotion. As they were leaving, the cops tried to pull out of a parking spot when they floored it right into the Salon, also hitting the bar DJ’s car in the process. Instead of notifying the manager and owner of the vehicle, the trio sped off from the scene. Unbeknownst to them, the DJ followed in pursuit catching them at a red light. When the men identified themselves as cops and claimed Corulla had food poisoning, the DJ agreed to settle with the officers the next day. The cops didn’t report the incident until Saturday morning, hours after the crash.
The Internal Affairs Bureau began an investigation immediately, suspending all three officers. Vincent Molinini lost his commanding officer status, having been recently promoted to command the detective unit of the NYPD’s high-profile Force Investigation Division, created by Commissioner Bill Bratton to investigate all deaths in police custody across New York City.
Police Officials told the media, “[Molinini’s] discretionary designation was revoked as a result of the internal investigation.” The lieutenant had started receiving his raise the day of the crash but has since lost it after the suspension.
The hair salon owner, Crystal MacNair, said the crash caused $80,000 worth of damage.
The car backed all the way in, half of my salon is destroyed … You never think something like this is going to happen,” she told the Daily News earlier this month. MacNair opened the salon a year ago. An employee complained that the crash will likely affect her pay saying, “We can’t use half the salon. It’s hurting our clientele.”
Molinini is in his 23rd year with the department. He made $176,157 last year, the equivalent of a captain’s salary. His promotion would have raised his salary even more.