EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Haverhill

July 17, 2013

Police fight Civil Service decision

State officials say ex-trooper got special treatment after crash

HAVERHILL — Three city police officers accused of giving special treatment to a retired high-ranking state trooper will continue their fight to avoid punishment.

The patrolmen’s union said it will fight a state decision supporting Mayor James Fiorentini’s disciplining of the officers, even if it means going to superior court.

The state Civil Service Commission recently upheld the mayor’s decision to punish the officers for giving preferential treatment to retired trooper Charles Noyes of Haverhill, who crashed his automobile in West Newbury in March of 2012 and then fled to Haverhill, according to police. Noyes was deputy superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police when he retired in 2006.

A union official said the officers involved will file a motion for reconsideration with the Civil Service Commission and, if unsuccessful with that, will file an appeal in superior court.

“We have received and reviewed the decision of the Civil Service Commission, and needless to say, we disagree with the Commission’s findings,” patrolman Rick Welch, vice president of the union, said in an email to The Eagle-Tribune. “There are a great number of key factual and legal issues that the Commission plainly did not consider in rendering its decision.”

Fiorentini said he received a notice from Welch indicating the union’s intentions. The mayor responded by saying, “They have every right to appeal and we respect that.” Fiorentini said he had no other comment.

Police Chief Alan DeNaro initially suspended Lt. William Leeman and patrolman Christopher Pagliuca for five days each for their handling of the incident in which Noyes crashed his Cadillac Escalade into a utility pole on Route 113 in West Newbury, snapping it in half and cutting power to the surrounding area for almost 11 hours, according to police.

Noyes then kept driving with his air bags deployed until police found him in the travel lane in the area of 12 River Road, just over the line into Haverhill near the Rocks Village Bridge.

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