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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Deputy Sheriff wins dismissal of charges


By Christina E. Sanchez TELEGRAM & GAZETTE STAFF

FITCHBURG- The Worcester district attorney's office dropped charges yesterday against a county correction officer who was accused of failing to stop, while on duty, for a Fitchburg police officer in November.

Assistant District Attorney Joyce Johnson asked a judge to drop the case against Officer Joseph F. Coggans of Dudley and to dismiss charges of resisting arrest, negligent driving, refusing to identify himself, failing to stop for police, obstructing an emergency vehicle and disorderly conduct. Fitchburg District Court Judge Edward Reynolds granted the request.

Karen Foley, spokeswoman for the district attorney's office, said District Attorney John J. Conte said he thought the incident involving Officer Coggans and the Fitchburg police did not belong in court.

"This matter is a jurisdictional dispute between two law enforcement agencies and we believe the conduct of the officers involved should be reviewed by their superiors for any disciplinary action they deem proper," Ms. Foley said, reading a statement from Mr. Conte.

Fitchburg Police Chief Edward F. Cronin supported his officers' actions in the November traffic stop, during which a confrontation between his officers and Officer Coggans took place. He said yesterday the decision to dismiss Officer Coggans' case belonged to the district attorney's office.

"The venue for the decision was in the court and we live by the court," Chief Cronin said. "It's time to move on."

Officer Coggans had been scheduled for a pretrial hearing yesterday at Fitchburg District Court. After a brief proceeding, however, his case was terminated.

Officer Coggans and his father, Joseph Coggans, and his Worcester lawyer, James J. Gribouski, left the courtroom, saying they weren't surprised by the outcome.

"Justice has been done," Officer Coggans' father said as he left.

Officer Coggans' lawyer commented on his behalf.

"We wish these charges had never been brought. The end result was no different than what we expected all along," Mr. Gribouski said.

On Nov. 18, Fitchburg Police Officer Joanne M. Bairos, who works for the department's traffic division, said she saw a sport utility vehicle from the Worcester County Sheriff's Department driving erratically over the Water Street bridge.

She went to the courthouse. Officer Coggans, who had been driving the SUV, was there to pick up an unruly prisoner at a judge's request. A confrontation between Officer Coggans and Officer Bairos occurred.

Officer Coggans left the courthouse with the prisoner. Meanwhile, the police street supervisor, Sgt. Jeffrey J. Howe, told all patrol officers to alert him if they saw the sheriff's department's vehicle.

Sgt. Howe wrote in a police report Officer Coggans did not pull the SUV over when he tried to stop him. When Officer Coggans did stop, Sgt. Howe wrote, Officer Coggans was uncooperative.

Edward F. O'Brien, a lawyer for the sheriff's department, said at the time initial reports showed the Fitchburg police officer "interfered" with Officer Coggans' official duties.

"Stopping a van with a prisoner in it is one of the most dangerous things to do," he added.

Worcester County Sheriff Guy W. Glodis said he would not discipline Officer Coggans who, he said, performed his duties as he should have. Mr. Glodis pointed out that the incident occurred before he was elected to the sheriff's post.

"Without a doubt justice prevailed today," Mr. Glodis said. "He was well within his duties and responsibilities of his job. He was summoned to the court in an emergency fashion, which required and accelerated rate of speed."

He comments of support for his officer were followed by criticism of Chief Cronin.

"The Fitchburg police chief has about as much knowledge of public safety as a troglodyte. He was way out of bounds to press charges and I can assure you there will be no further investigation against my officer," Mr. Glodis said. "Is a sad case, it's a disturbing and hopefully we can put it behind us and move on," he added.

Chief Cronin did not want to comment on Mr. Glodis' criticism. He said he, too, wanted to move past the incident and "childish" remarks benefited no one.

 

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troglodyte \TROG-luh-dyt\, noun:
1. A member of a primitive people that lived in caves, dens, or holes; a cave dweller.
2. One who is regarded as reclusive, reactionary, out of date, or brutish.

Troglodyte comes from Latin Troglodytae, a people said to be cave dwellers, from Greek Troglodytai, from trogle, "a hole" + dyein, "to enter." The adjective form is troglodytic.

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While I am personally glad the charges against the Deputy Sheriff were dismissed, I really don't care for how the Sheriff referred to the Fitchburg chief. :2c:
 

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JoninNH said:
troglodyte \TROG-luh-dyt\, noun:
1. A member of a primitive people that lived in caves, dens, or holes; a cave dweller.
2. One who is regarded as reclusive, reactionary, out of date, or brutish.

Troglodyte comes from Latin Troglodytae, a people said to be cave dwellers, from Greek Troglodytai, from trogle, "a hole" + dyein, "to enter." The adjective form is troglodytic.

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While I am personally glad the charges against the Deputy Sheriff were dismissed, I really don't care for how the Sheriff referred to the Fitchburg chief. :2c:
Agreed.
 

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A quick question to a State Trooper(or if someone heard this from one).I heard a story that approximately three months ago that a corrections officer in the Amesbury area was pulled over for driving a unmarked van at night, erraticaly and trying to pull over a vehicle with all female passengers.Does anyone know if this is true and if any charges are being sought against this person?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
PBC FL Cop said:

"The Fitchburg police chief has about as much knowledge of public safety as a troglodyte.

I guess a sentor would know more about public safety than a police chief !!!

I agree 100% with the DA's decision, but Glodis is in no position to make that statement!!
 

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No one knows anything about the supposed incident involving a corrections officer in the Amesbury area.Just curious, is there any known website that lists court arraighnments and/or charges?
 
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