What to Know
- A former DMV test examiner has been arrested and accused of demanding bribes from female drivers in Queens
- Officials say an investigation revealed the examiner refused to pass some female drivers who wouldn't pay cash bribes
- The examiner also once groped a woman who refused to pay a bribe. She was later approved for a license despite not having finished the test
A former road test examiner with the New York state Department of Motor Vehicles has been arrested and accused of demanding bribes from female drivers in Queens.
The office of the state inspector general announced the allegations facing Ian Cioffi, 35, of Nassau County, on Tuesday.
Officials say an investigation revealed that Cioffi refused to pass some female drivers who wouldn't pay cash bribes, and that he once groped a woman who refused to pay a bribe.
During that road test, in March 2018, Cioffi asked the female driver if she had any cash, officials said.
When the driver told Cioffi she didn’t have any, he allegedly took the steering wheel, pulled the car over and said she’d have to pay $100 to pass the test.
Cioffi lowered his request to $20, which she also refused to pay — at which point he put his hand on her leg and down her shirt, according to prosecutors.
After groping the woman, Cioffi told her she’d passed the test, despite the fact that she hadn’t done a three-point turn or parallel parked, prosecutors said.
Cioffi faces several charges including receiving bribes, larceny, falsifying business records and forcible touching. He was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday night.
"This defendant used his position of authority to extort and abuse vulnerable New Yorkers while controlling the outcome of a critical test that was anything but routine and fair," Inspector General Letizia Tagliafierro said in a statement.
"He violated the public trust, corrupted a basic test every driver must take and defiled the critical work of other honest DMV employees who work hard every day registering and licensing drivers across the state," she added.
Messages left with Cioffi weren't immediately returned.
He has resigned from his job.