Union says state police ‘punishing’ Proctor’s household with no-pay suspension


The State Police union is criticizing the company for suspending Trooper Michael Proctor, the lead investigator within the Karen Learn homicide case, with out pay, calling the transfer a “punishment to his young family.”

The assertion from Brian Williams, president of the State Police Affiliation of Massachusetts, got here a day after Interim State Police Col. John Mawn accepted a suggestion that Proctor be suspended with out pay, efficient instantly.

Proctor made $184,397 final yr, in accordance with state comptroller data.

“The decision to suspend him without pay pending the outcome of the investigation is disappointing because it shifts Trooper Proctor’s punishment to his young family,” Williams stated in his assertion.

“His children will lose access to benefits such as health insurance,” he continued. “To mitigate the impact on them, a more reasonable action would have been a suspension that did not affect their medical coverage.”

State Police officers referred to as a digital responsibility standing listening to for Proctor on Monday, by which a board of three decided whether or not the trooper would stay on full responsibility, be positioned on restricted responsibility, be suspended with pay, or be suspended with out pay.

Hours after Norfolk County Decide Beverly Cannone declared a hung jury within the Learn homicide trial on July 1, State Police relieved the trooper of responsibility, transferring him out of the Detective Unit assigned to the Norfolk County DA’s Workplace.

Proctor had the chance to be represented by counsel and defend his actions in the course of the listening to which was closed off to the general public and media.

Williams is standing agency within the union’s stance that Proctor’s self-discipline is linked to non-public textual content messages he exchanged in the course of the investigation.

“To date, we have received no information to indicate that his suspension was the result of anything other than these text message exchanges,” the union president stated in his assertion. “We would like to reiterate that unless the Department’s ongoing investigation proves otherwise, yesterday’s actions have no relationship to salacious allegations of cover-ups, collusion or conspiracies offered by the defense.”

Proctor’s two-day testimony in the course of the trial led legal professionals to disclose private texts by which the trooper used degrading and express language relating to Learn, resulting in widespread criticism of the investigator’s conduct and an inner evaluation by the State Police.

In some messages, Proctor referred to as Learn a “whack job (expletive) and a “babe,” wrote “No nudes so far” to colleagues whereas looking out her cellphone, and made express enjoyable of her gastrointestinal points, amongst different derogatory feedback.

“The State Police Association of Massachusetts will never condone the unacceptable language used in personal text messages presented as evidence during the trial,” Williams stated in his assertion.

Learn, 44, of Mansfield, is accused of killing her boyfriend of two years, a 16-year Boston Police officer, by backing her Lexus SUV into him at excessive pace, leaving him to die within the chilly throughout a significant snowstorm.

She is being charged with second-degree homicide, manslaughter whereas working a motorcar below the affect and leaving the scene of an accident leading to loss of life

The protection has alleged a large frame-up job to ensnare Learn, arguing that O’Keefe was overwhelmed to loss of life inside 34 Fairview Highway in Canton earlier than his physique was dragged to the entrance yard.

“Every member of the Massachusetts State Police hopes that the O’Keefe Family finds peace, comfort, and closure as they continue to mourn the loss of their loved one,” Williams stated in his assertion. “Until the focus is shifted away from collateral issues and back to investigating and prosecuting the death of John O’Keefe, the justice his family deserves will be delayed.”

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