Nassau County police released findings of an investigation Thursday, Feb 25, into sexting allegations against County Executive Ed Mangano that authorities have concluded was a hoax.
The determination came following a thorough investigation into both Mangano and BluChip marketing executive Karin Murphy Caro, who won no-bid contracts from the county worth $50,000.
“From the evidence I have, it was fabricated,” Nassau Police Detective Sergeant Patrick Ryder said. “As far as I’m concerned, the sexting case is closed.”
The purported sexual dialogue between Mangano and Caro “is a document that could have been created by a kid or somebody that has an agenda,” he added. “The phones were not hacked or spoofed.”
An animated Ryder detailed his exhaustive probe of their personal lives, revealing no interaction between the two.
“I’ve learned more about Caro’s personal life than I need to know,” he said. “It’s none of my business.”
No evidence of any contact between Mangano and Caro was found on their electronic devices, or any other documents or records for the past six months.
There was no trace of Mangano or his phone number in Caro’s phone, and her number did not appear on his phone after the county executive unlocked the device in the presence of Nassau County police and under threat of possible arrest.
Ryrder said he even ran Mangano’s license plates to determine that he had not been in the same place as Caro over the past six months, and he revealed he brought the phones to the FBI for technical advice.
“They are obviously not interested in some sexting scandal,” he said.
Nassau police requested the source of the original document from a reporter for WCBS-TV, which initially reported the purported sexting. The reporter declined to cooperate with the investigation, referring detectives to the station’s lawyers.
“I was handed this bag of crap,” Ryder said. “I know there are no winners here.”
Mangano issued the following statement after police released their findings:
“As I stated from the moment this matter was brought to my attention, my family and I are the victims of a hoax perpetuated by a deranged individual. I can only hope that the media will report the truth in the same manner as they reported the outrageous lies against me and the other victim. Now, I respectfully ask that you leave my family and me alone on this matter.”
The 53-year-old Long Island Republican, a married father of two, found himself the focus of a television report on the eve of Valentine’ Day that alleged the sexting.
Mangano responded on camera that someone had obviously hacked into his phone, an explanation that drew immediate comparisons to former New York Congressman Anthony Weiner after he was accused of sexting in 2011.
“I am outraged at this smear attempt and will take legal action against the sick individual who has sought to assassinate my character and hurt my family,” Mangano said in a statement.
In a video Caro produced that was put on YouTube in 2013, she is shown interviewing Mangano in his office, thanking him for “giving a regular girl like me the opportunity to sit down with you; I mean, you’re an amazing guy.”
Caro issued her own statement saying that she and Mangano had been “maliciously attacked” and that the texts were fabricated. She said she was currently “going through a trying period of my life regarding abuse and attacks” but declined to elaborate.
Caro received two contracts to provide “unique expertise” in promoting special events for the county’s parks department. The contracts were for just under $25,000, a sum that does not require county legislative approval.