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Monday, August 25, 2008

[NH] DANgerous fired Trooper Conrad could get his job back?

...Meanwhile, city prosecutor Tracy Connolly dismissed a fourth charge of criminal threatening... Connolly said she could not say why she dropped the charge... [Kelly Westgate, an administrative employee with state police] testified that the incident at headquarters between Conrad and the supervisors concerned her enough that she rounded up other office staff and retreated to an empty office for safety reasons... It was unclear yesterday whether the acquittal will allow Conrad to return to police work...

I don't know - can he get his job back? I can at least see him suing now. But jumping ahead to that question steps right over the immediate question - what the hell did that court, judge, and prosecutor just pull off - in plain view?

Previous posts:
Former trooper acquitted of threatening, other charges
Judge found insufficent evidence to convict him

Concord Monitor, NH
By ANNMARIE TIMMINS
Monitor staff
August 15, 2008
[Excerpts from a long article] A Concord District Court judge acquitted former state police trooper James Conrad of charges he resisted detention and placed a threatening call to his wife during divorce proceedings in 2007. Conrad was arrested in November 2007 by the Concord police after an altercation with his supervisors at state police headquarters. Judge Gerard Boyle ruled yesterday afternoon that the city prosecutor's office failed to prove that Conrad, a 14-year veteran of the state police, had knowingly or purposely committed the offenses... "The evidence presented at both the (April) hearing on the motion to suppress and during trial on the merits was overwhelming that the accused was suffering on the day in question from extreme emotional distress and was incapable of forming the requisite (state of mind)"... Boyle also acquitted Conrad of a disorderly conduct charge for the same reasons... Meanwhile, city prosecutor Tracy Connolly dismissed a fourth charge of criminal threatening that alleged Conrad said during his arrest that he was going to take a Concord officer's gun and "shoot him and everyone in the room." Connolly said she could not say why she dropped the charge... Conrad was fired from the state police in March, and in April appealed his termination with the state Personnel Appeals Board. If he is reinstated within nine months of his filing, he would be eligible for full retirement... It was unclear yesterday whether the acquittal will allow Conrad to return to police work. Conrad had been under internal investigation by the state police for nearly a month when he was arrested by the Concord police in late 2007. The internal investigation and the arrest both stemmed from marital disputes between Conrad and his estranged wife... Conrad reported his wife missing in September 2007... Conrad went searching for his wife and was seen speeding through Meredith as he passed cars with his SUV's flashers going... Conrad refused to stop for a Meredith police officer, the records said... When the Meredith officer arrived behind Conrad, Conrad said, "I'm a f------ trooper," according to the court records... Conrad asked a trooper from the Troop E barracks in West Ossipee to bring in a police dog to search for his wife... Conrad permitted the police to unlock his wife's vehicle and arranged to have it towed, the records said. Using the state police dog, another trooper determined that Laura Conrad had parked her vehicle and left in another vehicle... Laura Conrad filed for divorce several days later... Conrad was at the state police headquarters in Concord answering questions about the internal investigation on Nov. 28 when he became very agitated, according to court records. He told his supervisors that he believed his marriage, career and life were over. He punched a steel door, injuring his hand, and accused supervisors of siding with his wife at his expense, the records said. He did not respond to supervisors' efforts to calm him down and offered his resignation. Supervisors refused to accept it because of Conrad's state of mind, the court records said. They also told him he could not leave the office and physically restrained him when he tried, the records said. At one point, Conrad called his wife and told her, "I hate you, you ruined my life, you f------ bitch, you had to call, you ruined my life," the records said. The state police eventually asked the Concord police to respond to headquarters and take over the matter. The Concord police charged Conrad on several offenses. They alleged he violated the divorce decree by placing a harassing and intimidating call to his wife. They charged him with disorderly conduct for allegedly creating a loud outburst inside the office that alarmed others. A criminal threatening charge alleged he had taken the Concord officer's gun and threatened violence with it. And the resisting arrest charge accused Conrad of struggling against supervisors when they tried to detain him prior to the Concord police's arrival... Yesterday, Connolly called two witnesses to testify. Laura Conrad, who remains separated from Conrad, and Kelly Westgate, an administrative employee with state police who witnessed some of Conrad's behavior before he was arrested last year. Laura Conrad, who was reluctant to testify and did so only because she had been subpoenaed, testified that she reported her estranged husband's call to the state police because she feared for her husband's well-being, not her own safety. Westgate testified that the incident at headquarters between Conrad and the supervisors concerned her enough that she rounded up other office staff and retreated to an empty office for safety reasons... Connolly did not call the state police supervisors who were with Conrad at headquarters the day of his arrest...
http://www.concordmonitor.com/article/20080815/FRONTPAGE/808150302

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