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Appointment Of Schneiderman Special Prosecutor Creates Friction Between Cuomo, Manhattan DA

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- First there were abuse allegations and now an investigation has been launched into former New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

Photographers chased after him on Wednesday as he rushed into a car on the Upper West Side. And as CBS2's Marcia Kramer reported, Schneiderman's sex assault scandal isn't going away.

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It was over in a flash -- still photographers were able to capture two shots of a smirking Schneiderman leaving his apartment for the first time since a lurid scandal forced the state's top law man to resign.

He had little to say.

"Thank you. Have a nice day," Schneiderman said.

NY Attorney General Schneiderman Files Suit Against Trump Administration Over Census
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman speaks at a press conference to announce a multi-state lawsuit to block the Trump administration from adding a question about citizenship to the 2020 Census form, at the headquarters of District Council 37, New York City's largest public employee union, April 3, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Others had lots to say, especially Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who appointed a special prosecutor, Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas, to mount a criminal probe of Schneiderman after four women made explosive charges about being sexually brutalized by the former attorney general.

"I want the victims in this case to know that they are getting a full, fair, objective look at the facts," Cuomo said.

Naming Singas set up a public feud with Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance, who had already announced he planned to investigate Schneiderman. Cuomo removed Vance because Schneiderman had been looking into the DA's alleged mishandling of the Harvey Weinstein case.

In letter to the governor, Vance suggested that Cuomo's decision in the Weinstein and Schneiderman cases, "... violated the separation of powers that is intended to promote confidence in the independence of our criminal justice system. 'Re-assigning' the Schneiderman matter away from my office to a different elected prosecutor -- however skilled -- only compounds the mistake of that earlier action."

Wednesday afternoon, the governor released a letter of his own, saying he felt it was "frankly absurd" for Vance to believe he could investigate an office that is simultaneously investigating his conduct.

"I don't even want the whiff of a perception of conflict of interest or impropriety," Cuomo said.

Meanwhile, there is a full-fledged feeding frenzy to succeed Schneiderman, especially among women who hold law degrees or have prosecutorial experience. It is so intense that Singas tweeted that she was not interested. She, however, may be one of the few.


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