Courts Spokesman Fired After Saying He ‘Barely’ Worked

NEW YORK (AP) -

The New York state court system’s longtime communications chief was abruptly fired Thursday after he pocket-dialed a reporter who overheard him say that he “barely” went to work.

The Office of Court Administration says David Bookstaver was terminated since officials “take abuses of office extremely seriously.”

His firing came a day after the New York Post reported that he unwittingly dialed a reporter’s voicemail, which captured him conversing with someone else. Bookstaver said he was “not doing anything” and “barely” showed up at his $166,000-a-year communications director job. He’d planned to retire in October.

The 58-year-old Bookstaver had been with the courts since 1996. But his portfolio shrank after then-new Chief Judge Janet DiFiore hired someone else as public information director in February 2016.