The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, December 10, 2010

Sgt. Kevin Cardonne to face disciplinary hearing

After meeting in private session on Tuesday night, the Selectmen made the following announcement on Wednesday, December 8: “Having received the investigator’s report regarding the matter of certain allegations made against Police Sgt. Kevin Cardonne, the Carlisle Board of Selectmen has voted to proceed with a disciplinary hearing which has been scheduled to begin on Tuesday, December 21st at 12 p.m.”

The Selectmen’s press release states, “The hearing will be conducted in executive session by a hearing officer retained by the town unless Sgt. Cardonne requests that the hearing be conducted in open session. The board will consider taking appropriate action after it receives and deliberates upon a report of the hearing officer’s findings. Sgt. Cardonne will remain on paid administrative leave throughout the disciplinary hearing process.”

According to Article VII of the police union agreement with the town, after an introductory period of employment, police officers shall not be disciplined or discharged for disciplinary reasons other than just cause. The agreement also states that any decision of the Selectmen shall be subject to the provisions in Article V, which says the union may request binding arbitration.

Cardonne was placed on administrative leave on October 29, a week after Chief John Sullivan was placed on paid administrative leave. Both were the results of allegations made against them. Asked if the incidents were linked, Selectman Doug Stevenson said, “It’s all related to activities at the police station, but I wouldn’t say the specifics of the cases are directly connected.” Stevenson confirmed, “At this point there are no other investigations or allegations of any other town employee or any other member of the police department.”

While he would not identify who made the allegations, Stevenson did not deny that they had been made by a former police employee. Asked if the disciplinary hearing would be the first opportunity for Cardonne to respond to the allegations, Stevenson said, “It’s the first official opportunity. He has not had conversations with the board or its legal representatives.”

Stevenson said, “Based on what we’ve learned from the investigation, we believe there is enough evidence to go to a hearing. The purpose of the hearing is to confirm what we feel are the facts of the case, give him a chance to respond, and for the board to respond with a disciplinary action, should it be warranted.” He added, “We cannot take disciplinary action without first holding a hearing.”

A hearing officer in this type of situation is normally a lawyer. Stevenson said, “The Selectmen could hold the hearing ourselves, but we’ve chosen to have a hearing officer who is familiar with hearing proceedings to do this on our behalf.”

He would not give any information regarding Sullivan’s case, other than to say that he was hopeful there would be a resolution soon. While the Police Chief has been on paid leave, Lt. Leo Crowe has been handling Sullivan’s duties as well as his own. Stevenson said, “We are very pleased with Lt. Crowe’s leadership over the past several weeks. And we are very pleased that the other officers are carrying out their public safety responsibilities in a very professional manner.”∆

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