MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. – Michael Espinoza, the newspaper distributor for the Hudson Valley Reporter who was arrested in Mount Kisco last week, had his case adjourned until next month on Thursday night.
Espinoza, who is facing criminal tampering charges after being caught on video swapping out copies of his publication with The Examiner in the latter’s distribution boxes, is due back in Mount Kisco Justice Court on Nov. 14.
Faith Butcher, the publisher of the Hudson Valley Reporter, has denied any wrongdoing, citing a miscommunication as the cause of the incident.
On an audio track obtained by The Daily Voice, Espinoza can be heard telling private investigator Matt DiBiase that he was told by his boss that,” You can place (copies of the Hudson Valley Reporter) in the Examiner box.”
“The entire situation saddens me greatly,” Butcher said. “It is unfortunate that the incident involving a new distribution person is being used to paint a false picture of reality.”
Mount Kisco police responded to a separate incident on Tuesday involving a different green display box in Friendly’s that was vandalized by an unknown suspect. It remains undetermined if the two incidents are linked.
Adam Stone, the publisher of The Examiner, said that his company is taking certain necessary legal measures, but will otherwise continue reporting on local news.
“We’re trying to focus on the task at hand of publishing community newspapers,” he said. “Let’s just hope others can learn to embrace that same attitude and pay better attention to producing quality journalism as opposed to skulking around in the darkness of night to tamper with.”
Calls to Butcher’s lawyer, Raymond Cote in Carmel, were not immediately returned on Friday afternoon.