Saugerties Lighthouse Lawsuit and Police Power

saugerties After receiving injuries on the property of Saugerties Lighthouse, Police Officer Sydney Mills has filed a civil suit against the Saugerties Lighthouse Conservancy for failing to maintain the half mile nature trail leading to the Lighthouse.

According to the news report, Officer Mills fell on the Lighthouse trail on Feb 25, 2007 and “sustained severe and disabling injuries” which he claims are permanent. Mr. Mills was playing his role as a police officer who apparently lost his Boy Scout Handbook while responding to a call of a “boater in distress.”

Gil Hales, a former Lighthouse Conservancy board member, claims Mr. Mills “received state Workers Compensation benefits for medical treatment and has since returned to work.” Seems like the flashing Beacon of the Justice system may have another light-minded lawsuit to decide.

On January 7th, 2008, the Saugerties Citizens on Patrol attended a Village Board meeting to voice their concern about the lawsuit filed by Captain Thaddeus Harris… we seem to have fallen into the bizarre time tunnel of the wrong Police Academy movie… replace Captain Harris with Officer Mills and his wife, Amy. Mayor Robert Yerick told his residents that the Board cannot take sides in civil suit or fire Mr. Mills over his civil action.

Perhaps the only sensible statement about the alleged incident was made by Judith Spektor who wanted to know “whether there was actually a boater in distress while the river was frozen.” Considering the strange plot, has anyone called Sargent Carey Mahoney to solve this civil case?

blue_starLighthouse Background:

In 1869, the Saugerties Lighthouse was built on the Hudson River at the mouth of the Esopus Creek to guide navigation entering the creek and heading for the port of Saugerties. The two and half story red brick Italianate Lighthouse was built on 60-feet diameter granite crib designed to withstand the pressure of tidal currents and ice floes. The Lighthouse exhibited a Fixed White Light illuminated by a Sixth-order Fresnel lens 42-feet above river level.

Saugerties, derived from the Dutch phrase, Zager’s Killetje, was a sawmill on the creek. The paper sawmill became one of the leading producers of paper in the 1800s.

In 1954, the Lighthouse was sealed and replaced by an automated Light. After years of deterioration and vandalism, the Coast Guard began plans to demolish the Lighthouse Treasure. Fortunately, Ruth Reynolds Glunt, a widow of Chester B. Glunt who was a former U.S. Coast Guard Light-keeper, campaigned to save the historic Lighthouse. Thankfully, the efforts of this Lighthouse Lady and architect Elise Barry saved Saugerties Lighthouse in 1978.

The Saugerties Lighthouse Conservancy acquired the Lighthouse in 1986 and completely restored the historic treasure to its former glory. Saugerties Lighthouse is currently a Bed & Breakfast Inn furnished in the 1920s décor operated by a resident Keeper.

After 36 years of darkness, the Coast Guard installed a Fourth-order Fresnel lens with a solar-powered light on August 4, 1990. The active Lighthouse exhibits a Occulting White Light every 4-seconds 41-feet above river level to a visible range of 5 nautical miles.

For more information about the Bed & Breakfast Inn, please visit Saugerties Lighthouse with Bed & Breakfast

blue_starMap Location:
For Map Directions, please visit the
Google Map of Saugerties Lighthouse

Reference News Sources:
Suit raises hackles in Saugerties, Jan 08, 2008
Cop sues lighthouse group over injury, Jan 06, 2008

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About Debbie Dolphin

Lighthouse author and photographer living in New England

Posted on January 10, 2008, in Lodging, News, Politics, Satire and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Hi Kathy,

    Yes, some people do! Hopefully, the judge will dismiss his Get Rich Quick nonsensical Lawsuit Scheme.

    The bland Lighthouse news stories find their way into my In Folder from several sources. After reading and researching some of the Lighthouse news “facts,” I spice the Lighthouse news up with my own flavor of humorous insights.

  2. Some people will try anything for money. Where do you get all these stories? They are quite hilarious!

  3. Hi Olga, the traveling Meme Bra,

    The Band CD is ready for a new combined post!

  4. Tag! Your it! (Don’t worry – it’s FUN & EASY!)

  5. Hi Kim,

    Another news story where Reality is Stranger and more surprising than Fiction!

    Lodging at this very popular B&B Lighthouse is like stepping into the past where we can envision the Flappers of the Roaring Twenties of the 1920s are dancing the Charleston!

    Unfortunately, Reservations for 2008 is almost full and Saugerties Lighthouse is taking Reservations for 2009!

  6. very bizarre indeed Debbie….
    seems that old lighthouses make good b & bs….
    this one is very ornamental 🙂

  7. Hi Sue,

    Tis True, the Hudson River or any river may or may not freeze depending on the severity of the Winter Arctic Subfreezing conditions. No doubt, Judith Spektor and the Saugerties residents are keenly aware of their river conditions in the Winter?

    According to the Keeper’s Logbook – 2007 – February, the author walked across the frozen river to the opposite shore last February. Patrick, the Keeper of Saugerties Lighthouse, also claimed both “the creek and river were frozen all the way across.”

    And Judith’s statement seemed to be the only sensible question in this entire bizarre news story!

    The other indictments were not included in my satire because the legal documents were not located. Considering the bizarre nature of his civil suit, I will be shocked if Mr. Mills wins his Lawsuit.

  8. Actually, it was a river, and a river doesn’t necessarily freeze. So yes, a boater could be in distress out there very easily.
    However, Mr. Mills (I hesitate to call him an officer) seems to be out looking for a quick buck. His friend and former partner on the force was indicted on rape charges while on duty. I left that part out of my two stories on this issue, however, I discovered it while researching cops and lawsuits. And one of the commenters at the Daily Freeman mentioned it, so anyone following the link was able to see this.

  9. Hi Debo!

    Hilarious — Ranger Rick can be the lead star for “Police Academy 8: Ranger Rick’s Reward” 🙂

    Who knows, this could be Comic Gold at the Box office for Paul Maslansky, the creator of the Police Academy series?

  10. Sounds like Ranger Rick may have been on the sauce.
    If the lake was frozen how was the boater in distress.

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