Former Albany Top Cop Joins Corporate Security Firm

Retired chief focuses on technology to fight industrial espionage, protect intellectual property

Davis and Wolfgang have been business partners before. Davis also is an investor in Wolfgang's other post-police venture, Albany Aqua Ducks, an amphibious tour service in Albany. Wolfgang is the company's founder and pilots one of its duck boats.

With the tour business established and stable enough to weather his absence, Wolfgang, who retired as police chief in 2004, signed on with the security firm in December.

The company was incorporated in 2003 under the name of former Albany detective Timothy Murphy, who became Mayor Jerry Jennings' security detail and after that head of security at the Port of Albany.

But the business languished after Murphy's death in 2005. His widow, Toni Murphy, still technically owns it.

In recent months, the group has begun assembling a team of about 20 investigators, mostly retired law enforcement and military hands with expertise ranging from arson investigation, polygraph testing, video surveillance and cyber security.

On two walls in Wolfgang's office hang white boards covered with the names of prominent attorneys, public officials and tourist attractions to which the firm has pitched its services. Against the window blinds rests its recently inked private investigators license from the state of New York.

Davis declined to discuss the costs of the company's services, saying they can vary widely depending on the length and depth of services needed. Some, like arson investigations, can be lengthy and expensive, he said.

Wolfgang and Davis see their services as an ounce of prevention.

"The need has been identified," said Wolfgang, an Albany Aqua Ducks lapel pin tacked to the front of his tidy blue suit.

Wolfgang's exact title in the venture remains amorphous. Davis calls him the chief executive officer, an honor he modestly brushes off.

"In summer he's just the captain," Davis said with a laugh. "We promoted him back to chief."

Copyright (c) 2007, Albany Times Union, N.Y. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.