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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Retired Nashua police officer, union president, wages credibility complaint against Chief Seusing with Attorney General’s office

NASHUA – The state is reviewing a credibility complaint filed against Nashua Police Chief John Seusing, Senior Assistant Attorney General Jane Young said Tuesday.

“All I can confirm is that we’ve received a complaint,” Young said. “We look at the complaint and we determine if there was in fact an issue involving dishonesty, and we make the determination from there.” ...

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NASHUA – The state is reviewing a credibility complaint filed against Nashua Police Chief John Seusing, Senior Assistant Attorney General Jane Young said Tuesday.

“All I can confirm is that we’ve received a complaint,” Young said. “We look at the complaint and we determine if there was in fact an issue involving dishonesty, and we make the determination from there.”

Seusing will continue to serve as chief throughout the review, Tom Pappas, chairman of the Nashua Police Commission, said Wednesday.

“I am not concerned about the chief continuing to serve as chief,” Pappas said. “I have complete confidence in the job he’s doing.”

Nashua Police Deputy Chief Andrew Lavoie directed The Telegraph’s calls to Seusing on to Pappas.

The attorney general’s review stems from an issue raised by retired Nashua police officer and former Patrolmen’s Association President Tony Pivero.

Pivero, who has a history of butting heads with the Nashua Police Department, called himself a “whistle blower” in his time on the force, and was once disciplined for criticism. He filed his complaint with the state’s Office of Public Integrity to deal with an issue involving Seusing 10 years prior to the state’s so-called Laurie List, he said.

The “Laurie List” is named after a 1993 murder case, State v. Laurie, that was overturned when the Supreme Court determined prosecutors failed to disclose evidence about a police officer who testified at trial. It tracks officers with potential credibility issues should they be called to testify in court.

The document protects officers’ names and details of alleged incidents, but included as many as eight Nashua officers among the 47 total listings. The eight incidents occurred from 2000-06, and none has been reported in the years since. Most of the Nashua officers involved have since left the department, Seusing told The Telegraph last month.

“This actually started with you guys,” Pivero said Monday, referring to the March 21 article about Nashua’s involvement on the list.

Seusing told The Telegraph that if Nashua officers engaged in misconduct that questioned their credibility or reliability, “it’s very likely they would no longer be employed in the department.”

“In this profession, your credibility is everything,” Seusing told The Telegraph at the time.

Pivero said his complaint centers on a police report written by Seusing in the early 1980s when a group of Plymouth State University football players were arrested at The Bounty Room on Northeastern Boulevard. Pivero said the issue could have had implications on Seusing’s testimony in Michael Monroe’s murder case nearly 20 years ago.

Police arrested Monroe a year after Theresa Levesque was stabbed to death in 1993, and Monroe later confessed to the crime.

Seusing has been rising through the ranks of the Nashua Police Department for years and took over as its chief on Jan. 1, 2012.

“Chief Seusing’s been promoted five times since the Monroe trial,” Pappas added. “Virtually every supervisor above him would’ve been involved or weighed in in some way and each of them passed judgment that his performance merited his promotion and that speaks rather highly of him.”

Seusing’s success is part of the reason Pivero complained to the state, Pivero said.

At a March 27 police commissioners’ meeting, Pivero probed the commission and its selection process for chief, comparing its single interview with Seusing to other departments in the state that put out announcements and job advertisements for new chiefs.

“The outgoing chief picks the new boss so the new boss is no different than the old boss,” Pivero said of Nashua’s selection process. “The goal is the way the promotional system and the chief is picked in the city of Nashua,” he said.

Maryalice Gill can be reached
at 594-6490 or mgill@nashua
telegraph.com. Also, follow Gill
on Twitter (@Telegraph_MAG).