’A Current Affair’ visits Delhi to interview people in Eck case
By Patricia Breakey
Delhi News Bureau
DELHI A camera crew from the television show "A Current Affair" was in Delhi on Wednesday to film a segment about a Delaware County deputy suing his mother-in-law and a fellow deputy.
Deputy Jeffrey J. Bowie of DeLancey filed a defamation suit June 14 in Delaware County Court against Deputy Kenneth Eck Jr. of Downsville and Marie O’Brien of DeLancey. O’Brien is Jeffrey Bowie’s mother-in-law.
In the complaint, Jeffrey Bowie said that on Jan. 28, Kenneth Eck called Elizabeth Bowie and told her, "Your husband is having an affair with my ex-wife, Leslie Eck."
[an error occurred while processing this directive]Jeffrey Bowie also alleges that Kenneth Eck told Walton police officers, county employees and others that Jeffrey Bowie and Leslie Eck were having an affair.
The lawsuit arose from a dismissal hearing for Kenneth Eck, who was suspended for 30 days without pay for allegedly conducting an off-duty investigation into misconduct and an alleged extramarital affair involving Leslie Eck and Jeffrey Bowie. Kenneth Eck allegedly conspired with Elizabeth Bowie to conduct surveillance of Jeffrey Bowie’s activities.
Kenneth Eck is also alleging misconduct in the Delaware County Sheriff’s Department.
Alissa Collins, "A Current Affair" field producer, said the staff of the television show regularly scans various media to find unique stories and discovered The Daily Star coverage of Kenneth Eck’s hearing and Jeffrey Bowie’s lawsuit.
Collins said she had conducted interviews with Kenneth Eck, who was accompanied by his attorney, Joseph Ermeti, on Tuesday night and Undersheriff Douglas Vredenburg on Wednesday. She was on Courthouse Square in Delhi to interview Leslie Eck at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
Matthew Tully, Leslie Eck’s attorney, said his client agreed to do the interview for $1,500.
Collins said not all of the people who were interviewed requested payment. She said negotiations were still under way with Bowie, whose attorney, Andrew VanBuren, had cancelled a scheduled interview Tuesday.
Collins said she had not yet contacted O’Brien and wasn’t sure whether anyone else would be interviewed, although the show was trying to obtain photos of Delaware County Social Services Commissioner William Moon and Sheriff Thomas Mills.
"Everybody has been really nice and friendly," Collins said. "Kenny Eck is happy for the national attention the story is getting."
Jeffrey Bowie and Leslie Eck work for the Department of Social Services, and Elizabeth Bowie, Jeffrey Bowie’s wife, works for Public Health.
"A Current Affair" is a syndicated newsmagazine show originally hosted by Maury Povich from 1986 to 1996.
The show returned to television March 21, 2005, and Tim Green is the host.
Scott Stein, producer of the Bowie/Eck segment, said he wasn’t sure when the show would air but said it would be soon.
"We are trying to piece it all together," Stein said Wednesday. "Deputy Bowie is not locked down yet, and we need to try to get Marie O’Brien."
During Leslie Eck’s interview, she denied any personal connection to Jeffrey Bowie and dodged questions pertaining to her custody battle with Kenneth Eck over their child.
Tully was also interviewed and said, "I don’t see how the romantic relationship of a single woman has anything to do with a custody fight with an ex-lover."
Collins, who was working with sound operator Roger Cook and camera operator Scott Alexander of TVCrew NY, said the segment would be between two and five minutes long.
Eck’s dismissal hearing will continue Monday when he has an opportunity to present his side of the case with his attorney, Thomas Halley.
Patricia Breakey can be reached at 746-2894 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.