BOSTON (CBS/AP) — A Massachusetts state trooper is suing the agency after he said he was ordered to alter a police report so the daughter of a judge could avoid embarrassment.
The suit filed Tuesday in federal court said Trooper Ryan Sceviour responded to a car crash the evening of Oct. 16 in Worcester. He arrested the female driver after she allegedly failed field sobriety tests. The suit said she also indicated she had a heroin addiction.
According to the lawsuit, the woman arrested is the daughter of a Massachusetts judge.
Sceviour claimed he was disciplined at state police barracks days after the arrest and ordered to remove certain statements she made from the report, including any references to the judge.
"The trooper said to (a Major),'This is morally corrupt, it's completely wrong. This would not be happening if this was not the daughter of a judge,' and the Major said, 'You are right. I agree with you,'" Sceviour's attorney, Leonard Kesten, told WBZ-TV.
State Police spokesman Dave Procopio told WBZ Sceviour was wrong to include comments that weren't relevant to the woman's arrest.
"Supervisory members of the State Police, up to and including the Colonel, may review any report and have the responsibility to order any appropriate revisions. In the report in question, the revision consisted only of removal of a sensationalistic, directly-quoted statement by the defendant, which made no contribution to proving the elements of the crimes with which she was charged," Procopio said.
"Inclusion of an unnecessary sensationalistic statement does not meet the report-writing standards required by the department. The revised report – which is clearly marked as having been revised –includes all observations made by troopers, all descriptions of physical evidence found in the defendant's possession, and summaries of statements made by the defendant relative to her possession and use of heroin, all of which constitute clear evidence against her. Furthermore, both versions of the report were submitted to the court. The removal of the inflammatory and unnecessary quotation did not change the substance of the trooper's narrative, did not remove any elements of probable cause from the report, and, most importantly, had no impact on the charges against the defendant."
Trooper Dana Pullman, the State Police Association of Massachusetts president told WBZ-TV that he has never seeen a request from a colonel like this during his 31 years on the job.
"I don't understand how the Colonel of the State Police was putting this into place and to what end," said Pullman.
The Chief Justice of District Court, Paul Dawley released a statement saying: "Judge Timothy M. Bibaud never communicated with or contacted the District Attorney, State Police or any other court officials to discuss this case."
The suit seeks damages.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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