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Quadruple Homicide Case Draws Attention To Ossining Gadfly Clay Tiffany

Clay Tiffany hosted a public-access TV show. Photo Credit: Screen grab
Nicholas Tartaglione with a K-9 officer in 2007 when Tartaglione was a member of the Briarcliff Manor Police Department. Photo Credit: File photo
The four alleged victims in the quadruple homicide allegedly committed by Nicholas Tartaglione: clockwise from top left: Miguel Sosa-Luna, Martin Santos-Luna, Urbano Morales-Santiago and Hector Guitierrez. Photo Credit: U.S. Attorney/Southern District

OSSINING, N.Y. -- Clay Tiffany, a longtime Ossining gadfly who died last year, is back in the spotlight as his claims of police brutality from a former Briarcliff police officer accused of killing four people have resurfaced.

Tiffany, who hosted a public access show called "Dirge For The Charlatans," won a $1.1 million settlement from the village after claiming that former officer Nicholas Tartaglione assaulted him. 

Tiffany used his public access show to rail against the Village of Briarcliff Manor and was a regular fixture at village board and board of education meetings. 

He may have been dead for up to two weeks when police found him at his Ossining home on March 26, 2015, after someone asked for a welfare check. He was 69 or 70 years old when he died of natural causes.

Tartagalione was indicted this week for killing four men execution-style in an Orange County bar over a cocaine deal that went bad. According to the indictment, after killing the four men, Tartaglione drove with the bodies for 30 minutes from a bar to his farm in Otisville, where he allegedly buried them. 

In 1999 while serving as a Briarcliff police officer, Tartaglione was charged with perjury and official misconduct after testifying in court at a DMV license revocation hearing for a friend. Tartaglione was ultimately acquitted at trial but fired by the village.

In 2003, he sued to get his job back and received more than $300,000 in back pay. He retired from the force in 2008 on disability with a reported annual pension of $65,000.

Tiffany sued the Village of Briarcliff Manor numerous times and was a perennial candidate for the Briarcliff Board of Education, running seven times, though never winning. 

Besides Tartaglione, Jerry Smith, the president of the Ossining NAACP was convicted of second-degree harassment after an altercation with Tiffany in which he allegedly manhandled him and threatened to beat him up in 2004, according to

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