Biddeford (ME) Police Department Exposed!

News of sexual allegations against two former Biddeford police officers, first reported by Benjamin Meiklejohn of the Courier, ” is taking the city by storm.” David Charns, WMTW news reporter, broke the news about the allegations on television to a larger audience just days after the Courier reported the same. With the media so controlled it’s a breath of fresh air that Ben and David have the courage to report on what needed reporting years ago.

On March 5, 2015 the Courier reported ” A man who grew up in Biddeford has turned to social media to begin a dialogue with city leaders about how to prevent child sexual abuse and provide resources to victims. Matt Lauzon, who now lives in Boston but grew up in Biddeford, said he was sexually abused by a former Biddeford police officer nearly two decades ago, but felt too afraid and ashamed of his experience to speak out about it to authorities.

Lauzon, who graduated from Biddeford High School in 2003, has filed a complaint with the Maine attorney general and requested an investigation into an officer who is now retired and living in Florida. Lauzon said he first approached the Biddeford Police Department about the alleged crime last fall.

In recent weeks, Lauzon started to publicly engage Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Mayor Alan Casavant on Facebook about how the community can prevent child abuse and support victims – while articulating details of an experience that left him struggling his whole adult life.

“I feel guilt and shame that I didn’t speak up sooner and that he’s never been convicted and now lives free and clear in Florida,” Lauzon posted, “and now that numerous people are telling me similar stories, I have nightmares about staying silent and letting this abuse happen to other young women and men, or letting silence lead to young women or men taking their own lives.”

Lauzon shared publicly on Facebook his experiences growing up in Biddeford and always feeling like the officer was watching him.
Beaupre said he is prohibited by law from talking about the officer being investigated by the attorney general, but takes seriously any criminal activity by the city’s police officers.

“There’s nothing worse than a criminal cop,” Beaupre said. “It puts a black eye on the whole agency.”’

Read more HERE.

Mar 12, 2015 David Charns, WMTW reports “Allegations of sexual abuse at the hands of a Biddeford police officer have been forwarded to the attorney general’s office.” View HERE.

March 12, 2015 the Courier reports “Public reacts to allegations.” Read more HERE.

April 8, 2015  David Charns, WMTW reports “3 men claim sexual abuse at hands of former Biddeford officer.” View HERE. “WMTW News 8 has learned the same state detective who looked into Alexander’s case in 2002 and 2003 is now investigating the new claims of abuse.”

On April 9, 2015 the Courier reported “Abuse alleged against second officer. Larry Ouellette said he was abused by former Biddeford police captain Norman Gaudette when he was 15 years old. Although the case was investigated by the state attorney general’s office, no charges were brought against the officer.

Ouellette, 43, said he is telling his story to bolster fellow Biddeford native Matt Lauzon, 30, who recently alleged former officer Stephen M. Dodd abused him when he was a boy. Lauzon first announced the allegations last month on his Facebook page. The case was forwarded to the attorney general’s office by the Biddeford Police Department.

Since then, another Biddeford man, Jonathan Clark, has also alleged that Dodd abused him and is requesting documents related to his case from the state attorney general’s office.

Dodd worked at Biddeford Police Department from 1978 until July 18, 2003. His last day of work was Dec. 19, 2002, and he went on leave the day after. Dodd was suspended in November 2002 pending an attorney general’s investigation. Police Chief Roger Beaupre said Dodd cited medical reasons for retiring after 25 years of employment.

Dodd surrendered his certificate of eligibility to work as a law enforcement or correction officer in Maine, effective July 18, 2003, upon retirement.

The attorney general’s office would not confirm or deny whether Dodd was or is the subject of an investigation, citing confidentiality statutes.

Ouellette filed a Freedom of Information Act request to obtain documents from his case, which dates back to 1989- 90, but was told in a March 27 email sent by Assistant Attorney General Phyllis Gardiner that, after a search, the office has no records in response to his request.

“The records that we did have were forwarded to state archives some years ago, and we learned today upon checking that these particular records have been destroyed in the normal course of business per the retention schedule in place,” Gardiner wrote.

Ouellette has filed a complaint with the attorney general’s office regarding destruction of the files, maintaining that they could have been used in a current investigation related to Dodd and the Biddeford Police Department as a whole.”

Read more HERE.

On April 9, 2015 the Courier also reported “Allegations made against officer are similar. Robert Kalex, who no longer lives in Biddeford, alleges that former police captain Norman Gaudette initiated a sexual relationship with him when Kalex was 15.

Kalex, now 50, said his troubles began in the 1980s, when Gaudette took him under his wing. According to several previously published news reports, Gaudette was investigated by the attorney general for sexual misconduct in 1990. Assistant Attorney General Phyllis Gardiner would not confirm or deny that an investigation took place, however, citing statutory requirements.

The Courier contacted Gaudette last week for his response to the allegations.

“I don’t have anything to say about that,” Gaudette said. “Why don’t you ask the chief about that?”

Said Kalex, “I tried many years ago to get attention brought to this, but I couldn’t say something productive for the good of the community – (the police) turned it all around and used it against me.” Eventually, Kalex said he spoke to investigators from the Attorney General’s Office, not only about Gaudette, but about the Biddeford Police Department’s treatment of him after he alleged abuse by Gaudette.

“Nothing ever happened,” he said. “They had the knowledge, but it was shoved under the rug because these were high-standing officers.”  Kalex said there are a dozen more people he alleges are victims of either former sergeant Stephen Dodd or Gaudette.

According to past communications between the Courier and the Biddeford Police Department – as well as sources who were interviewed – Dodd was investigated by the attorney general’s office in 2002. Police Chief Roger Beaupre declined to comment on the nature of the investigation, and now declines to confirm the existence of an investigation, citing statutory requirements.

In 2003, Dodd notified the Maine Criminal Justice Academy that he would surrender his law enforcement certificate, effective upon his resignation July 18 that year.

Since the Courier reported on March 5 about the complaint against Dodd, five more men in addition to Lauzon have alleged abuse by Dodd or Gaudette.

Read more HERE.

April 9, 2015 the Courier reports “Residents plan to attend the city council meeting Tuesday, April 21 to address recent allegations of child sex abuse that have surfaced against two former Biddeford police officers.” Read more HERE.

Apr 12, 2015  “The silence is over,” Matt Lauzon said in a recent YouTube video about the case. “And together, we are much stronger.” View video HERE.

The charges against Biddeford police officers has reached the ears of The Boston Globe.

April 16, 2015 the Courier reports “AG looks at cases that span decades. Amidst recent allegations of child sex abuse by two former police officers, several men who allege they were abused are questioning whether the Attorney General’s Office was negligent in prosecuting the officers earlier investigations.

Richard Alexander of South Portland said he interviewed in 2002 with Michael Pulire, an investigator from the Attorney General’s Office, that he was abused by then-officer Stephen Dodd. Alexander alleges that the abuse began in the mid- 1970s when Alexander was 10 years old and the abuse lasted for five years. Alexander said Pulire told him back in 2002 that Pulire was interviewing other people who may have also been abused by Dodd.

In February, Matt Lauzon, a Boston man who grew up in Biddeford, alleged on Facebook that he had been molested by Dodd as a child and had filed a complaint with the Biddeford Police Department, which was forwarded to Maine Attorney General Janet Mills. Pulire is also the investigator on Lauzon’s case.

After reading an article about Lauzon’s story in the Sentry several weeks ago, Alexander said he called Pulire to ask what happened with the investigation (theSentry covers news in South Portland and Cape Elizabeth, and is owned by Mainely Media LLC, which also owns the Courier). Alexander said Pulire told him the investigation was “still open.”

When Alexander asked Pulire why it was taking so long to complete the investigation – which is still open 13 years after his initial interview – Alexander said Pulire told him, “Well, you know, Mr. Alexander, it’s an ongoing investigation.”

Dodd worked as a Biddeford policeman from 1978 until July 18, 2003. His last day on duty was Dec. 19, 2002, and he went on leave the day after. Dodd was suspended in November 2002 pending an attorney general’s investigation.

Dodd notified the Maine Criminal Justice Academy on June 25, 2003 that he would surrender his certificate of eligibility to work as a law enforcement or correction officer in Maine, effective July 18, 2003, upon his retirement.

Brian MacMaster, who was chairman of the academy, accepted Dodd’s surrender on July 8 that year. MacMaster was also director of investigations for the Maine Attorney General, responsible for overseeing the 2002 investigation of Dodd. MacMaster has been the director of investigations since 1984.

Biddeford resident Jonathan Clark, another man who alleges that Dodd abused him as a boy, said he too, was interviewed by Pulire in 2002, but the interview was one of the most embarrassing times of his life.

Clark said Pulire’s tactics were intimidating and he felt deterred from telling the whole story about the abuse; Clark said Pulire told him he would go to jail if he lied.

Lauzon, who initially submitted his complaint against Dodd to the Maine State Police in October, wrote on Facebook that he never received a response from the Maine State Police, but was instead contacted by a Biddeford detective.

“I felt very confused about who to reach out to, given that it involved a former Biddeford police officer, so I tried hard to reach someone outside their office,” wrote Lauzon. “Frankly, in retrospect, I’m not sure why they didn’t send me directly to the attorney general’s investigator given the nature of what I was reporting.”

As others have come forward alleging abuse by former Biddeford policemen, and claiming to have already cooperated with the attorney general more than 10 or 20 years ago, Lauzon has gotten increasingly frustrated with the absence of an indictment or arrest.

Lauzon has called for the city council to suspend Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief JoAnne Fisk, to allow for a “fair and independent” investigation to occur.

For Alexander, who recently sat down with the Courier to tell his story (see “Man racked with guilt, PTSD after abuse” on 1), the fact that Dodd remains free causes him a lot of guilt. Alexander said when he first talked to Pulire back in 2002, Pulire mentioned that Dodd’s relationship with his foster son, Larry Carey, was also being investigated. Carey died at the age of 30 in 2000.

When Alexander read Lauzon’s story, he said it brought back guilty feelings. Alexander said if he had come forward earlier to accuse Dodd, perhaps he could have prevented Lauzon from being abused and Carey might still be alive.

With the attorney general failing to take action indicting Dodd, Alexander said feels it is important for others to know what he experienced, and hopes he can prevent others from being abused.” Read more HERE.

April 21, 2015 – Biddeford City Council meeting.

View council meeting HERE. (starts at 13:40)

“Victims call for Biddeford chief’s suspension pending investigation”, WMTW reporter, David Charns – View here.

WGME reporting “It was standing room only inside the Biddeford council meeting Tuesday night where alleged victims came forward with horrifying accusations.” View here.

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Has anyone ever wondered why the mayor/city councilors stood back and watched this happen?

Has anyone made the connections from the Attorney General’s Office to the Criminal Justice Academy?

Has anyone wondered why the same investigators, who failed in their duties years ago, are back in the picture?

The non-compliance with the law, the lies, the violation of peoples’ rights, the obstruction of justice, the abuses – call it what you may – abuse is abuse and has long been the norm in the Biddeford PD. A full and fair investigation into the PD is warranted! And yes, it’s fully documented!

It takes a lot of courage to do what Matt, and others, have done. The truth must come to light and perpetrators (and aiders/abetters) must be held accountable, otherwise the pattern continues. The abuses, atrocities, brutalities inflicted upon the people of Biddeford, and other Mainers, have gone on way too long and must cease! Mainstream media has been the “shield” in protecting this corruption, until recently, when reporter Ben Meiklejohn (Bidd-Saco Courier) and WMTW reporter, David Charns had the courage to take the Biddeford bull by the horns….the right thing to do!

Matt, God put you on this path for a reason….stand tall, stay strong! You are not alone.

April 23, 2015 –  David Charns, WMTW reports “Documents reveal more about accused Biddeford officer’s past.” View HERE.

April 30, 2015

The Courier reports ” Details emerge.” “Two former Biddeford police officers and a firefighter say they had suspicions about the behavior of another former officer, Stephen Dodd, whom four men allege abused them when they were children.

Steve Martin, who worked for the Biddeford Police Department from November 1979 to July 2006, said he worked as Dodd’s partner for most of his own tenure as a police officer.

Martin said he and other officers suspected Dodd liked younger men, but never saw anything suspicious to report. Martin said he believes other officers or former officers know more details about Dodd’s activities, but aren’t talking.

“We all felt that something wasn’t right,” Martin said of Dodd, “but we didn’t know.”

“Dodd had a foster son, Larry Carey, who died at age 30 in 2000, reportedly of liver failure. (See “Accused person had foster son, now deceased,” in the April 2 issue of the Courier.)

Lloyd Gaudette, another former police officer, who worked October 1976 to October 1997, said it was public knowledge on the police force that Carey was Dodd’s foster son, but one incident that occurred in the 1980s raised eyebrows. Gaudette said police had been called to Dodd’s residence because Carey had acted out in anger and stabbed Dodd’s waterbed repeatedly with a knife. Gaudette said another former officer, Alfie Lambert, took the police report on the incident and also said that Carey may have told Lambert things about Dodd. Lambert worked for the Biddeford Police Department from May 1977 to September 2002. Attempts to reach Lambert were unsuccessful. “People always said there was something going on, but nothing was done. I always suspected something,” Gaudette said.

Biddeford resident Jonathan Clark said he spoke to Michael Pulire, an investigator with the Maine Attorney General’s Office, in 2002 about sex abuse Clark alleges Dodd inflicted on him. Pulire also interviewed Richard Alexander in 2002 as part of an investigation. More than 13 years after Alexander first provided information to the Attorney General’s Office, Pulire told Alexander the investigation is still “ongoing.”

On March 30, Clark asked the attorney general to provide copies of documents from the 2002 investigation of Dodd in which he was a witness. That same day, Director of Investigations Brian MacMaster replied to Clark, “The documents you are requesting are confidential by law and cannot be provided,” citing Title 16, Section 804 of Maine statutes.

The Maine Legislature amended the statute of limitations in 1991 to allow prosecution at any time if the victim was under age 16 when incest, rape, or gross sexual assault were committed. However, the law applied only to future crimes and prior crimes where the previous statute of limitations had not run out.

State Representative Martin Grohman (D-Biddeford), said he would generally be in favor of removing the statute of limitations for all previous crimes as well, but would need to know more about the legality of doing so.

If everyone’s suspicions about Dodd are correct, Lloyd Gaudette added, then it is the silence that has allowed him to get away with his crimes for so long. “Either nobody would ever come forward, or nobody could ever prove it,” Gaudette said. “I had nothing concrete. If I did, I would have called the attorney general myself.”

In recent weeks, residents have called on city leaders to suspend Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief JoAnne Fisk during the AG’s investigation.

Lloyd Gaudette said since the investigation is being conducted by the Attorney General’s Office, suspending Beaupre and Fisk would have little effect on the investigation.”

Read more HERE.

Fortune reports “Childhood sex abuse victims seek justice via Facebook. For more than 15 years, Boston entrepreneur Matt Lauzon carried a horrible secret that nearly drove him to suicide. He tried the proper channels. And, when that failed, he turned to social media.

When Lauzon began reaching out through proper channels, he ran into brick walls. Wary of a Biddeford Police Department that he felt might be partial to Dodd (who retired in 2003 at the age of 46 and moved to Florida), Lauzon eventually filled out a form on the Maine State Police website, but never heard back from them. Instead, he received an email from one of the Biddeford detectives who had originally gone to Lauzon’s home years earlier, asking him to come to the local station and give a verbal statement. Lauzon was told that the matter was then referred to the state Attorney General’s office, but he soon felt that he was getting the runaround.

Where he went next was Facebook.

Soon Lauzon was regularly posting about the situation, including copies of emails from city officials that seemed to reference the case. His attorney originally expressed concern about using social media in such a manner, but later acknowledged that the medium had helped to uncover many more alleged victims (including some who had gone to law enforcement much earlier than Lauzon, but to no avail). As of this morning, five other men have accused Dodd of abusing them as children.

Lauzon is scheduled to meet shortly with Maine Governor Paul LePage, who Lauzon says “has taken a lot of interest” in the situation.

Dodd’s attorney did not return a request for comment, and the Biddeford Police Department and Maine Attorney General’s office have said publicly that they cannot publicly discuss the situation.”

Read more HERE.

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Evidence proves investigations by Brian MacMaster and Michael Pulire are less than a poor job performance.

Brian MacMaster has covered up for law enforcement in the past. Both he and Pulire have brushed crimes under the rug. Documented!

“Jonathan Clark and Richard Alexander spoke to investigator Michael Pulire in 2002. More than 13 years after Alexander first provided information to the Attorney General’s Office, Pulire told Alexander the investigation is still “ongoing”?

The years turn into decades while victims wait on the delayed investigations. People, and victims, are beginning to realize they are getting an obvious “run-around” with the rubber-stamped approval and co-operation from the Attorney General(s).

Lloyd Gaudette is right when he states, “it is the silence that has allowed him to get away with his crimes for so long.”

Lauzon filled out a form on the Maine State Police website, but never heard back from them.
Do you wonder why?

On July 24, 2011 correspondence was sent to John Morris, Commissioner, Department of Public Safety requesting his help with crimes committed due to the refusal of the Attorney General to investigate.

Pursuant to 25 MRS, Chap. 351: Department of Public Safety §2908. Police officers; powers and duties; cooperation, the Commissioner of Public Safety may expand the duties and powers of police officers beyond the duties and powers enumerated in this section to investigate, prosecute, serve process on and arrest violators of any law of this State.

Response from Commissioner John Morris. His response contradicts what the statute stated. Since his response, check that same statute 25 MRS, Chap. 351§2908, it’s been changed. (2009). Will the deceit ever end?

Relative to the subject of statute of limitations –
“The Maine Legislature amended the statute of limitations in 1991. State Representative Martin Grohman (D-Biddeford), said he would generally be in favor of removing the statute of limitations for all previous crimes as well, but would need to know more about the legality of doing so.”

The statute of limitations has long been used as an excuse to deny justice.

How did the statute of limitations come about? Rep. Grohman must ask ” What are the rules and regulations that govern this law?” If repugnant to the constitution, it’s an unlawful law. People have a right to due process and justice.

MAY 1, 2015

PPH reports “The Maine Attorney General’s Office confirmed in an email obtained Thursday by the Portland Press Herald that it is investigating an allegation that a former Biddeford police officer sexually assaulted a teenage boy in the late 1990s.

In the email, Attorney General’s Office spokesman Tim Feeley says the “allegation was referred to this office by the Biddeford Police Department.

JoAnne Fisk, deputy chief of the Biddeford department, provided the Press Herald with a copy of the email that was sent to WMTW-TV reporter David Charns. Fisk declined further comment when contacted Thursday night.

Boston resident Matthew Lauzon, who grew up in Biddeford, triggered a flurry of discussions about abuse on his Facebook page when he posted accusations last fall that former Biddeford police Officer Stephen M. Dodd sexually assaulted him more than decade ago. His allegations prompted Rick Alexander of South Portland to testify before the Biddeford City Council last month, accusing Dodd of raping him 40 years ago.

The 30-year-old Lauzon has previously told the Press Herald that Dodd – who was a police sergeant at the time – sexually assaulted him in the woods near their homes more than a decade ago. Lauzon said he filed a complaint against Dodd with the Biddeford police in October that was forwarded to the Attorney General’s Office. He wonders why the Attorney General’s Office only contacted him recently to request a statement.

“While it’s great to hear the AG confirm an investigation, I must admit I don’t understand why they waited six months to ask me for a statement. If they didn’t feel my initial statement was clear enough, why wait six months to ask for a clearer one?” Lauzon said in an email to the Press Herald on Thursday night.

Fisk confirmed that Lauzon’s complaint was forwarded to the attorney general soon after her department received it last fall.

“Admittedly, I don’t feel a sense of comfort,” Lauzon wrote in his email. “Recently, the Biddeford Police Department reached out directly to people alleging knowledge of sexual abuse by former officers, and Chief (Roger) Beaupre recently instructed me to send alleged victims to the Biddeford Police Department. Both of these things completely contradict that the AG is independently conducting an investigation and it worries me that the Biddeford police may be actively interfering with the AG investigation.

“At this time, I think it’s inappropriate for the attorney general or Biddeford Police Department to be conducting this investigation. I believe this is an investigation that should be performed by federal authorities.”

Lauzon’s attorney, Walt McKee of Augusta, said Thursday night that he is “confident” that his client is the individual referred to as the teenaged victim in Feeley’s email.

McKee said he is “conducting a parallel investigation” with the help of a private investigator he has hired to assist his staff.

“We want to make sure we have another set of eyes on this case,” McKee said. “The persons who committed the abuse and those who knew about it and allowed it to happen will all face civil action.”

Feeley’s email raised concerns that publicizing the investigation would hamper its progress.

Feeley said that while the statute of limitations for certain sex crimes was gradually eliminated by the Legislature, conduct alleged to have occurred many years ago may still be barred from prosecution by the limitations in place at the time. He did not elaborate on how this alleged crime might be affected by a statute of limitations.”

Read more HERE.

May 1, 2015 (video)  “TheTruth | I was abused by a former Biddeford Police Officer” by Matt Lauzon. View video HERE.

May 1, 2015

WMTW reporter David Charns reports “In an email to WMTW the Maine Attorney General’s Office confirmed it is investigating allegations of sexual assault at the hands of a former Biddeford police officer in the late 1990s. The email from Tom Feeley was in response to an interview request from WMTW. The request was denied, in part, the office said, to uphold the integrity of its investigation.” Read more and view report HERE.

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Relative to the statute of limitations. This is another tactic used as an excuse to deny justice and it works. They drag on cases for years then use the statute against the victims.

All laws are governed by rules/regulations. How did the statute of limitations come about? What are the rules and regulations that govern this statute? If repugnant to the constitution, it’s an unlawful law. People have a right to due process and justice.

May 4, 2015

PPH reports “The city of Biddeford and its police department are facing legal action – possibly from multiple sources – in connection with allegations of sexual abuse of minors by at least one former officer. Police leadership ‘knew or should have known’ about it, claims an attorney for people accusing a former officer of sexual abuse.

Walter McKee, attorney for several people who say they were sexually abused as children by a former Biddeford police officer said he is preparing to bring a lawsuit against the department for not stopping or preventing the assaults. “I’m not saying it was a hunch or gross speculation or anything like that. They either knew it was happening, or turned a blind eye to it,” McKee said.

Gene Libby the attorney for that former officer, Stephen Dodd, also is scrutinizing what information police officials have provided to the news media and to one outspoken victim – disclosures that could result in legal action if he believes confidentiality statutes were violated. He requested all correspondence related to the release of Dodd’s employment records, copies of all communications with Lauzon and copies of all correspondence, electronic or otherwise, with any journalist. The latter request does not specify a time frame or topic.

McKee said many of the witnesses his firm has contacted as part of the case are still in the Biddeford area. Even people who allege abuse that happened too long ago for criminal prosecution may be important witnesses, helping to shore up the cases of people who were abused more recently, he said.”

Read more HERE.

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Gene R. Libby, Dodd’s attorney, served as District Attorney for York County between 1981-85. He continues to serve York County as General Counsel to the York County Commissioners and all County departments (Deeds, Probate, Sheriff, Corrections) since 1998.

Does this have an appearance of impropriety for a former DA, and General Counsel to government departments, to defend a private person?

May 4, 2015

WMTW reporter David Charns reports “Alleged Biddeford sexual abuse victim speaks exclusively about state’s response.
Lauzon: ‘There are far too many questions’

View exclusive interview with WMTW News 8, Matt Lauzon, click here.

May 5, 2015 – Biddeford City Council meeting.

Public addressing the council, view HERE. (starts at 25:52)

Bob Hower addresses the Biddeford City Council, view video HERE.

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If an outsider can see……??

May 6, 2015

WMTW reporter David Charns reports “Tempers flare as alleged Biddeford sexual assault victims speak. Accusations of sexual assault flew during tonight’s Biddeford City Council meeting and afterward attendees called for city leaders to step down. Alleged victims and audience members at Tuesday night’s Biddeford City Council meeting called for city leaders to resign amid an investigation into sexual assault at the hands of two former city police officers.” Read more and view report HERE.

PPH reports “An emotional city council meeting broke into shouts and tears as sexual abuse victims and their supporters pleaded with city officials to suspend the police chief and deputy police chief amid allegations that two former officers abused teenage boys. Read more HERE.

WGME report “Alleged sexual abuse victims demand Biddeford chief, deputy chief be suspended.

After listening to an hour of public comment, the council abruptly ended the meeting to meet in executive session as residents, including sexual abuse victims, yelled at the mayor and councilors to take action.

In front of a standing room-only crowd, Matthew Lauzon said it is irresponsible for the police chief to stay on the job as the Attorney General’s Office investigates his allegation that former police officer Stephen Dodd sexually abused him in the late 1990s.

“I do not believe a fair and objective investigation is happening,” Lauzon, 30, said during his emotional five-minute speech to the council during its public comment session.”  Read more and view report HERE.

May 7, 2015

Mayor Alan Casavant letter to Senator David Dutremble 5.7.15, click here.

Molly Lovell-Keely, managing editor of the Courier reports “Police commission mum on abuse allegations.”
Police commissioners are Roger Gagnon, Leo Simoneau, Ralph Croteau, Kevin Jacques and Chairman James Emerson. Jacques is brother to city attorney Keith Jacques.

“What is the city administration waiting for to take action? asked Ward 6 resident Bob Provencher at a meeting Tuesday, May 5. “Don’t wait for the police commission to take action because the chief has lined up some of his friends (on the commission). They will not take action, so as a result, we the citizens are not being represented.” Read more HERE.

May 8, 2015

WMTW reports “Biddeford mayor wants help in how to address abuse allegations.” View report and read more HERE.

May 9, 2015

Forum at the J. Richard Martin Community Center, read more HERE.

WMTW reporter David Charns reports “Former Biddeford cop sex abuse case deliberately thrown out, retired detective claims.” View report and read more HERE.
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There are many “Assistant” Attorneys General in the Office of the Attorney General. The pattern of lies, deceit, cover ups, over the decades, “shocks the conscience.” To name few, Cheryl Harrington, Arthur Brennan (now active retired judge), Carmen Coulombe, Linda Conti, Francis Ackerman, David Lauren (special ass’t to (former) A.G. Andrew Ketterer, Brian MacMaster (Director of Investigations), Paul Gauvreau…

The pattern continues in the courtroom where former assistant attorneys general are elevated to judgeship.

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Statement being read by Matt Lauzon – former Biddeford Police Detective Terry Davis identifies Eric Wright as the (now former) Assistant Attorney General who knowingly and purposefully did throw this case under the rug. View video HERE.
Eric E. Wright is Staff Attorney at the Maine Bureau of Consumer Credit Protection.

Police brutality, abuses, assaults are an accepted norm by the Maine Attorney General’s Office. Brian MacMaster’s (Chief Investigator) poor job performance, and politically motivated, should be of concern to all Mainers. Here is one more example of another cover up by Brian MacMaster.

York County Deputy Sheriff Clifford Scott’s Deposition (in part) regarding the A.G.’s “extensive investigation” conducted in this case – 10 minutes! View HERE.

York County internal investigation – (in part) Deputy Mary Dowdell’s statement, click here.

Maine State Police, Col. Alfred Skolfield letter, click here. No one from the A.G.’s office interviewed the victim.

For those who are interested, listen to this incident HERE.

May 10, 2015

WGME13  reports “More people claiming they were sexually abused by former Biddeford Police officers continue to come forward.” View report HERE.

May 12, 2015

WGME13  reports ” Biddeford petition calls for general meeting. After two emotional city council meetings, the group plans to once again demand answers and action. “I hope that they would go into executive council and decide on a vote to remove the chief and the deputy chief so that way it would allow other people, other victims to come forward and share their stories,” Luedke said.”

But Biddeford Mayor Alan Casavant says that won’t happen. “There will be no council action, it’s simply a mechanism to hear, so once people have talked, the meeting is over,” Casavant said”. View report HERE.

PPH reports “Petition in Biddeford forces third hearing on sex abuse allegations against ex-officers. Mellisa Luedke submitted the petition to City Hall demanding a meeting on or before Wednesday. The city clerk’s office said Monday that it had received 172 signatures from Luedke and certified that 132 of them were by Biddeford residents – above the 100-signature threshold in the city charter. “Some people in the older generation think this should be kept quiet. They think we’re spoiling the city’s name,” Luedke said. “Then there were people who grabbed the clipboard out of my hand because they were ready to sign (the petition). It’s very emotional.” Read more HERE.

WMTW8 reports “Gov. Paul LePage will meet with alleged victim Matt Lauzon on Thursday to discuss Lauzon’s allegations of sexual abuse at the hands of a former Biddeford police officer, according to a State Sen. David Dutremble.

Retired Biddeford Police Detective Terry Davis released a statement claiming he investigated sexual abuse allegations against former police Capt. Norman Gaudette by alleged victim Larry Ouellette more than two decades ago. In his written statement, which was read at the forum Saturday, Davis claims that the Assistant Attorney General handling the case, who is no longer with the A.G.’s Office, told him he “did knowingly and purposely throw the case under the rug with the grand jury.” View report HERE.

May 13, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “Biddeford council sets special meeting on allegations for Tuesday. The special meeting is scheduled for 5-7 p.m. at City Hall. Petitioner wants time rescheduled. A professional facilitator has been asked to host. Mellisa Luedke, of Biddeford, successfully collected more than 100 valid signatures to force the council to meet. The city clerk verified the majority of those signatures Tuesday afternoon. Luedke has since asked the city to reschedule. I didn’t ask for a facilitator friend of yours to join my meeting,” Luedke wrote to Mayor Alan Casavant late Wednesday. “So you can cancel that. I know you are personal friends and that’s not going to work for the citizens. Also, I’ll need the 7 p.m. time. I work until 5 p.m. as well as the other citizens that would like to attend. Please try again.”‘ View report HERE.

WGME13 reports “Biddeford police chief breaks his silence. Chief Beaupre says he’s only staying silent because he’s being advised to do so by the city attorney and the Maine Attorney General’s Office. Chief Beaupre says he firmly believes when the investigation is over people’s fear that he had any role in the accusations will go away.

“There have been some reports generated to me. I’ve dealt with them honestly and I have not swept them under the rug contrary to what some people want to believe,” Chief Beaupre said.

The attorney general says the department has cooperated. There is a public meeting next week and the chief says he might be there.” View report HERE.

May 14, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “Matt Lauzon met with Gov. Paul LePage on Thursday. LePage said he is concerned about sexual abuse allegations and will do everything he can. “I’ve been there and I know what he’s talking about,” LePage said about Lauzon.

The governor told WMTW News 8 reporter David Charns if he could take action against the Maine Attorney General’s Office, he would.

Lauzon also said he has a meeting at the Attorney General’s Office, which had no comment on Thursday.” View report HERE.

WCSH6 report, view HERE.

PPH reports “Matt Lauzon meets with LePage; also is meeting with state investigators” Read more HERE.

The Courier reports “Larry Ouellette reflects on what it’s like to come forward after allegations. Ouellette spoke publicly for the first time Saturday, May 9, at the J. Richard Martin Community Center public forum.

The forum was sponsored by state Sen. David Dutremble, a Democrat from Biddeford, who has been charged by the city to pursue legislation related to where registered sex offenders can live, as well as how officials may comment on criminal investigations under Title 16.

“I wanted to talk so badly, but I was too involved in my own emotions to even begin to think of what to say. Furthermore, I would have felt mocked. I would have felt like it was a waste of time. Those guys wouldn’t have listened,” Ouellette said, referring to the council and mayor.

A detective at the time, Terry Davis, eventually did try to help Ouellette. Davis spoke to the Courier in an exclusive interview where he purports the Maine Attorney General’s Office swept Ouellette’s abuse and other allegations of abuse under the rug. (See “Blowing the whistle,” on page 1.)

As the investigation progressed, Ouellette met with former Assistant Attorney General Eric Wright in Augusta. Wright now works as a staff attorney for the Bureau of Consumer Credit Protection under the Department of Professional and Financial Regulation

“You’re instantly made to feel like a liar,” Ouellette said of the AG interview. “(Wright) said, ‘You realize, this is a man’s job you’re talking about here.’” In a recent interview Wright said he doesn’t remember the Gaudette case.

Davis had told Ouellette that there were more than 10 other witnesses in the case against Gaudette, which was headed to a grand jury. Ouellette was to be the main witness in the 1990 case, but when the morning came for him to testify, he got a phone call from the district attorney who said his testimony wasn’t needed.

“The wall of silence has been broken. It’s just incredible that we are where we are today. I thought it completely impossible.”’ Read more HERE.

The Courier reports “Terry Davis, former BPD detective, says the AG’s office purposely threw a case against a former police captain. Davis is claiming the Maine Attorney General’s Office rigged an investigation of police Capt. Norman Gaudette so Gaudette would not be indicted on charges of sexual misconduct.

In an exclusive interview with the Courier on Friday, May 8, Terry Davis, who worked for the department from 1986 to 2003, outlined details of what he said was one of the most negligent investigations he ever witnessed. Davis told the Courier he was blindsided in 1991 when investigators failed to call alleged victims to the stand at a grand jury indictment hearing at York County Superior Court, instead allowing Gaudette to defend himself to the jury without testimony from the accusers.

In early 1991, Davis said he and Gagne were notified by then-Assistant Attorney General Eric Wright to appear at a grand jury indictment hearing at York County Superior Court.

Davis said Wright told him in the briefing that he would ask him questions on the stand about when Ouellette first reported abuse and what he reported.

When Davis took the stand however, a different sequence of inquiries were rolled out. “He didn’t ask me anything about any of that, nor did he intend to,” Davis said. “I was totally blindsided. That was about the most unethical and bastardly thing a lawyer could do, never mind somebody who represented the state and its citizens. (Wright) should be disbarred. I felt it that day, and I feel it 20 years later … He acted as co-counsel to Capt. Gaudette.”

“I go out into the hallway, and I remember Gagne’s face. I told him, ‘You’re not going to believe what just took place.’ … then all of a sudden appears (attorney) Gene Libby walking with Gaudette and his wife,” Davis said, “and they walked right into the jury room and closed the door.

“My mind was so reeling … It was one big staged play.”

Libby was the district attorney for York County from 1981 to 1985 and is currently representing Stephen Dodd, another former Biddeford police officer currently facing allegations of sex abuse. Libby has not responded to repeated requests for comment about either Dodd or Gaudette.

In the months that followed, Davis said numerous detectives became involved in an investigation that yielded nearly a dozen people who were potential victims of Gaudette. The investigation started internally, overseen by Biddeford Capt. Royal Marcoux, and ended with Michael Pulire, an investigator for the Attorney General’s Office, he said.

Robert Poisson, who worked for the Biddeford Police Department from 1974 to May 14, 2015 2004 primarily as a patrolman, worked as a detective from 1984 to 1989. Poisson said he took a report of an allegation against Gaudette in 1989, but does not believe that complaint was ever forwarded for inclusion in the attorney general’s investigation.

In a May 15, 1991 article in the Journal Tribune, Gaudette’s lawyer said he had been cleared of sexual misconduct charges and would return to his job.

Earlier this year, Ouellette filed a Freedom of Information Act request to obtain documents from his case, but was told in a March 27 email sent by Assistant Attorney General Phyllis Gardiner that the records had been destroyed.

“The records that we did have were forwarded to state archives some years ago, and we learned today upon checking that these particular records have been destroyed in the normal course of business per the retention schedule in place,” Gardiner wrote.

Wright said when he worked for the Attorney General’s Office all written reports were put into the archives.

“They were not (destroyed) to my knowledge,” Wright said.

According to documents sent by the Attorney General’s Office to the Courier, schedules for the destruction of records have been approved at various times for different categories of records.

James Tierney, a Democrat, was Maine’s attorney general from Jan. 6, 1981 to Jan. 6, 1991. Michael Carpenter, also a Democrat, became attorney general on Jan. 7, 1991. “Eric Wright was the assistant attorney general at the time,” Davis said. “I would have a hard time believing that the situation wasn’t at least discussed with the attorney general. If it wasn’t, Eric Wright really wielded power.

In recent months, Lauzon and his supporters have questioned why the attorney general assigned Pulire as the investigator, when he had previously investigated Dodd in 2002 to 2003, and failed to indict him.

Steve Rowe, a Democrat, was attorney general from 2001 to 2009 and during the investigation of Dodd.

Davis said even though the events took place such a long time ago, he remembers it as clearly as if it were yesterday. “It’s like the day a parent died. Some of us just don’t forget certain things that are traumatic in nature. I remember it clearly,” Davis said. “(The Twin Towers) is a good example: everyone does remember and will for the rest of their life.

“The bottom line is, if Detective Gagne ever comes forward and verifies this, the truth will come out. Don’t go with blind faith with the Attorney General’s Office.”’ Read more HERE.

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Lauzon and his supporters are correct in questioning why the attorney general assigned Pulire as the investigator in this case. Terry Davis was “blindsided” by Eric Wright, but “thinks (Pulire) did a great job investigating this case, it’s just too bad it was all thrown under the bus.” It’s not the only case Pulire “threw under the bus.” Is this being credible and professional? In fairness to Terry, he was not with the PD at the time of Pulire’s concerted “staged play” with Chief Roger Beaupre and others.

May 16, 2015

WCSH6 reports “Mayor thanks LePage for meeting with alleged victim.” View report HERE.

Mayor Alan Casavant letter to Governor Paul LePage, HERE.

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Residents collected signatures to compel the City Council to meet to hear their concerns about allegations against a retired police officer. The meeting will be held 5 to 7 p.m. May 19th in council chambers on the second floor of City Hall. John Alfano, who works as a mediator, will facilitate the meeting. Read more HERE.

The petitioners collected signatures to compel the City Council to convene a meeting….not an arbitrator. Will this John Alfano be the “mediator”?

May 17, 2015

BDN reports “After meeting with Matt Lauzon on Thursday, Governor LePage said he’ll do everything he can to help. Lauzon said he was encouraged by what he heard from the governor.

Lauzon said he doesn’t want the attorney general’s office investigating his rape allegations because he wants an independent entity brought in. But the governor says he doesn’t have control of that branch of government.

Lauzon publicly called on Biddeford’s police chief and deputy chief to step down. Now, Lauzon is expressing frustration with Biddeford’s Mayor Alan Casavant because on Thursday the mayor sent a note to the governor thanking him for meeting with Lauzon.

“I do not believe that it is genuine. I believe that it was a publicity stunt. I believe that it was an effort to do damage control,” Lauzon said.”

Read more HERE.

May 18, 2015

WMTW8 reports “Special Biddeford City Council meeting about sexual abuse allegations rescheduled to May 28 at 7 p.m.

PPH reports “A meeting between alleged sex abuse victims, their supporters and the Biddeford City Council has been postponed and moved to a larger venue.

After the general meeting was scheduled for 5 p.m. May 19, Casavant said he heard from resident Mellisa Luedke, who circulated the petition. He said she complained that the meeting was at an inconvenient time because of her work schedule. Casavant said he did not hear back from Luedke about an alternate date, but a new spokesman for the alleged abuse victims, former city councilor Melissa Bednarowski, stepped forward to help find a new time, he said. The meeting on May 28 will being at 7 p.m. The location has not been announced. The meeting will be facilitate by John Alfano of Hunt Alfano Arbitrators.

Bednarowski questioned the role of Alfano at the meeting and in a press release referred to herself as the facilitator of the general meeting.

Lauzon and Bednarowski are encouraging people to attend Tuesday’s regular City Council meeting to continue to push councilors to suspend Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Police Chief JoAnne Fisk, who led the police department when Dodd was investigated for similar allegations in 2002.”
Read more HERE.

May 19, 2015

Biddeford City Council, view HERE.

Council Meeting Agenda, click here.  2015.28) Amendment/Ch. 30, Emergency Services/Add New Article IV- Sex Offender Residency Restrictions (starts at 58:00)

PPH reports” Sex offender appears in audience as Biddeford council adopts residency restrictions” Read more HERE.

May 20, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “Biddeford city councilors passed an emergency ordinance Tuesday prohibiting sex offenders from living within 750 feet of schools or parks, but it was when a registered sex offender showed up that tensions rose. Councilors were discussing the ordinance when Mike McKeown, 49, a registered sex offender, came to the meeting to defend himself, he said.” View report HERE.

May 21, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “An emergency ordinance went into effect Wednesday at midnight prohibiting sex offenders moving to Biddeford from living near schools and parks.” View report HERE.

The Courier reports “In 2002, House Legislative Sentiment 852 was entered into the appendix of the legislative record, commending Gaudette for his service as a police officer: “Captain Norman Gaudette, of Biddeford, on the occasion of his retirement after 28 years with the Biddeford Police Department. We extend our appreciation to Captain Gaudette for his dedication to the people of his community and wish him well in his future endeavors.” The sentiment was supported by Biddeford’s entire legislative delegation. Read more HERE.

Sentiment 852

Maine House of Representatives – 120th Legislature, click here.

May 28, 2015

General meeting of the citizens
Biddeford High School Library
Thursday, May 28th at 7:00PM

The Courier reports “General meeting is Thursday; rules murky. Former Ward 4 City Councilor Melissa Bednarowski has offered to facilitate the meeting, with Alfano assisting as an advisor. Read more HERE.

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reportsCitizens hold meeting amid sex abuse allegations.” View report HERE.

May 29, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “City of souls in turmoil’: Alleged victims, neighbors call for suspensions in Biddeford amid investigation.” View report HERE.

PPH reports “About 80 people attend a three-hour meeting to air grievances about the investigation and the response by city officials. Read more HERE.

PPH reports “Biddeford council plans meeting with police chief to discuss sex abuse allegations. Critics have called for the suspension of Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief JoAnne Fisk, but Mayor Alan Casavant says the council won’t take action at Monday’s closed-door meeting. Read more HERE.

May 30, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “The lawyer representing two former Biddeford police officers accused of sexual abuse has broken his silence. Gene Libby sent a letter to WMTW News 8 saying past allegations against former Capt. Norman Gaudette were deemed legally insufficient. Read more HERE.

WCSH6 reports “The lawyer for a former Biddeford police officer, accused of sexually abusing young men, released a statement regarding recent reporting on Saturday.

Gene Libby said his client and his client’s family are being victimized. In his statement, Libby pointed to recent media reports where his claims his client has been part of “character assassination and their sensationalism.”

Libby goes on to discredit a former detective who has come forward claiming the department took part in a cover up of allegations 25-years-ago.”  Read more HERE.

Attorney Gene Libby Press Release, HERE.

The General Public Citizens Meeting held on May 28th at the BHS Library will air on Ch3, click here.
Sat. 7pm
Sun. 11am. & 10pm
Mon 8pm

May 31, 2015

WGME13 reports “CBS 13 is continuing to follow allegations of sexual abuse at the hands of former Biddeford police officers. Saturday the lawyer of one of those former officers, who CBS 13 is choosing not to name, has released a statement. Larry Ouellette is one of several alleged victims to go before Biddeford city leaders seeking justice for abuse they say happened when they were younger. Gene Libby, the attorney representing Ouellette’s alleged abuser, says these allegations are false.

Ouellette’s attorney, Walter McKee, calls the statement disappointing saying, “I was very disappointed to see more denial, more complete and utter unwillingness to accept any responsibility.”

Libby says his client was investigated and went before a Grand Jury in 1991. He wrote in his statement, “the Grand Jury found there was not sufficient probable cause to believe that a crime may have been committed.” View report and read more HERE.

WCSH6 reports “Attorney Gene Libby, who represents accused former Biddeford Police captain Norman Gaudette, breaks his silence.

“Terry Davis, a detective for the Biddeford Police Department at the time, has created a fiction, and the fiction is that assistant attorney general threw the case to the grand jury,” Libby said. “That is absolute fiction.”

Davis said the same thing about Libby’s story, telling NEWS CENTER he “look[s] forward to his fiction novel,” calling the claims the “same old song and dance Libby tried using many years ago.”

In a statement, a lawyer for Larry Ouellete, writes, “Unexplainably, Captain Gaudette somehow got to testify before a grand jury while Larry never did.” View report and read more HERE

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Attorney (and former District Attorney) Gene Libby knows, or should know, that the accused NEVER appears before the grand jury. Should a true bill of indictment issue, the accused defends during a trial, with presentment of evidence and/or witnesses. However, this “judicial process” is not upheld in York County Superior Court…an egregious denial of due process.

Grand Jury, click here.

Jun 1, 2015

WMTW8 reports “Biddeford council meets with police officials in executive session. The Biddeford City Council held an executive session Monday night after hearing last week from alleged sexual abuse victims by former Biddeford police officers and other residents. Many in the city have called for the council to suspend the city’s police chief and deputy chief. No action was taken Monday.

Councilors are considering just what to do, if anything, with the police chief and deputy chief.

Mayor Alan Casavant said what was discussed will be taken into consideration in the future.

“I’m disappointed it’s taken this long, taken this much effort. But I am happy that there seems to be a productive, healthy dialogue that seems to be happening tonight,” said Matt Lauzon, an alleged victim.

Casavant said the matter is not an agenda item for the city council meeting Tuesday.

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Councilors are “considering just what to do”; Mayor Casavant said “that was discussed will be taken into consideration in the future” and Casavant said “the matter is not an agenda item for the city council meeting Tuesday.”

Matt Lauzon, an alleged victim, states “”I’m disappointed it’s taken this long, taken this much effort. But I am happy that there seems to be a productive, healthy dialogue that seems to be happening tonight.”

Was this productive?

June 2, 2015

City Council Meeting June 2 2015, click here.

Councilor Roger Hurtubise’s motion to place the police chief and deputy chief on paid administrative was deferred to Attorney Harry Center. Center stated the motion “should be ruled out of order, it’s illegal.”

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “At Tuesday’s meeting, Councilor Roger Hurtubise motioned to suspend Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief Joanne Fisk amid an investigation at the Attorney General’s Office.

Two other councilors joined Hurtubise in the motion, but Mayor Alan Casavant ruled them out of order.

“We’ve been saying this from day one. In fact, the other night when people were talking about the removal I specifically said you can’t do that because the individuals were not present,” Casavant said after the meeting.

Casavant said a law says as city personnel, Beaupre and Fisk are legally due a hearing if a vote were to take place. Casavant said he did not know if the law was a state or local one.

The council adjourned by saying it will meet about the chief and deputy chief Monday, June 8. The council will meet Thursday, June 4, with an opportunity for public comment.

A lawyer for Beaupre, who was at Tuesday’s meeting, said all questions for comment should be directed to Casavant. Fisk did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday night.” View report and read more HERE.

WCSH6 reports “A motion to put the Biddeford police chief and deputy chief on leave was deemed illegal. When Mayor Alan Casavant asked the city attorney if that motion is legal, the attorney said no.

Matt Lauzon said he believes the mayor is preventing councilors from getting certain information.

“I don’t think due process is happening,” he said. “I think that the mayor is obstructing justice.”

The city is holding a meeting Thursday, where residents will be able to discuss non-agenda items, including the allegations.

City councilors will hold an executive session meeting Monday. It hasn’t been decided yet whether the police chief and deputy chief will be there.” View report and read more HERE.

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WCSH6 doesn’t name the “attorney.” It was Harry Center, former city solicitor during the tenure of Mayor James Grattelo. He’s back! He’s a partner in the law firm of Woodman Edmands Danylik Austin Smith & Jacques, P.A.

June 3, 2016

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “the city of Biddeford has hired an attorney to represent Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Police Chief Joanne Fisk amid sexual abuse allegations at the department, Mayor Alan Casavant said. City councilors met behind closed doors Monday with Beaupre, Fisk and Timothy J. Bryant, a partner at Preti Flaherty in Portland. Read more HERE.

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How interesting! The victims claim the Attorney General, Janet Mills, is dragging out this investigation.

“When Republicans gained control of the Maine Legislature in 2010, Mills, a Democrat, was not reelected to another term. She joined the law firm Preti Flaherty in February 2011. When Democrats regained control of the Legislature in the 2012 elections, she was again chosen to be Attorney General.”

“Biddeford City Manager John Bubier confirmed to the Courier today that the city is paying for Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief JoAnne Fisk’s legal counsel.” (Attorney Timothy Bryant – Preti Flaherty) View Biddeford-Saco-OOB Courier, HERE.

June 4, 2015

Municipal Officers Meeting @ 7 pm
Online Video Stream, click here.

The Courier reports “Another man has come forward with allegations of sexual abuse against former police sergeant Stephen Dodd. Norman Girard, 53, of Old Orchard Beach, spoke at Biddeford’s general meeting of citizens on May 28, alleging that he and two other people close to him were sexually abused by Dodd on seperate occasions.

From 2002 to 2003, while Dodd was the subject of an investigation by the Attorney General’s Office, Girard said he was contacted by an investigator from that office, Michael Pulire, for information about alleged abuse that Dodd may have inflicted on him and the two other people.

Girard then wondered how the Catholic priest scandal resulted in convictions if statutes of limitations had been in place. Read more HERE.

PPH reports “Biddeford mayor calls for hard evidence from critics of police officials.
Backers of those who allege former police officers sexually abused them say they don’t trust officials enough to submit written statements. “If Sen. Dutremble or anybody else can show us any shred of misconduct by any current city employee – and I emphasize the word ‘current’ – then the council and I will act swiftly and appropriately,” Casavant said in his written statement. Read more HERE.

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Mayor Casavant has viewed documentation of “misconduct by any current city employee.” He did nothing! He was advised by Attorney Keith Jacques!

Why is Center back? Does Harry Center have a contract with the city?

WCSH6 report: Biddeford mayor asks for proof of misconduct. View HERE.

WGME13 report: Biddeford sex abuse claims. Read more HERE.

WMTW8 report: Biddeford residents express divided opinions before council. Read more HERE.

June 08, 2015

Special Council Meeting – View HERE.

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “Biddeford’s City Council has voted 6-2 not to suspend its police chief and deputy chief amid an investigation at the Attorney General’s Office.

In a statement Monday, the council wrote in part, “after long and extensive review of all available information at this time, the Mayor and City Council will not be seeking to initiate any adverse employment action against Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre and or Deputy Chief Joanne Fisk.”

The council met in an executive session Monday to discuss the information available. The chief and deputy chief were not present. Read more HERE.

PPH reports “The Biddeford City Council passed a resolution on Monday saying it will not suspend the police chief or the deputy chief in the midst of a contentious sexual abuse scandal involving a former police officer.

Following a 90-minute executive session, the council voted 6-2 in favor of the resolution, which says there isn’t enough evidence to take “adverse employment action” against Police Chief Roger Beaupre or Deputy Chief JoAnne Fisk.

Councilors Bob Mills and Robert Quattrone voted against the resolution. Absent from the meeting was Councilor Roger Hurtubise, the uncle of Matt Lauzon, the man whose allegations of abuse by a former police officer touched off the public outcry.

Lauzon declined to comment and left City Hall visibly upset after the vote.

City officials say the Attorney General’s Office has given no indication of wrongdoing by Beaupre and Fisk, and last week Mayor Alan Casavant requested residents pushing for their suspension provide him with evidence of mishandled cases.” Read more HERE.

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It’s very curious that Councilor Bob Mills appears to be so concerned about this corruption and the victims. Mills’ comments appear to be appease both sides. With the evidence at hand, and viewed by Mayor Casavant (which dropped his jaw to his knees, stating “I didn’t know this was going on”, a full and fair investigation is warranted into the actions of Councilor Bob Mills and others, including city employees. This has also been brushed under the rug! Is this you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours?

“If Sen. Dutremble or anybody else can show us any shred of misconduct by any current city employee – and I emphasize the word ‘current’ – then the council and I will act swiftly and appropriately,” Casavant said in his written statement. Evidence of “misconduct by current city employees” is available! Sometimes you must look beyond a specific issue in order to achieve an intended goal. Food for thought.

June 11, 2015

The Courier reports “Council resolves to keep chiefs on duty.

Longtime resident Laura Seaver said she’s tired of city hall being “hijacked” by “one quarter of 1 percent” of the city’s population who are asking that the chief and deputy chief be put on paid administrative leave while an investigation is held into the alleged abuse of young boys by two former officers.

“I’m tired of hiding in the shadows,” Seaver said at the June 4 meeting. “I’ve been harassed.” Seaver was the first person to speak at a series of public meetings against putting Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief Joanne Fisk on paid administrative leave during an investigation being led by the Maine Attorney General’s Office. Seaver said she and her husband, Randy Seaver, a campaign volunteer for Mayor Alan Casavant, received phones calls and texts in the middle of the night and people driving by their home because of their stance on the issue.

“If (Sen.) Dutremble or anybody else can show us any shred of misconduct by any current city employee – and I emphasize the word ‘current’ – then the council and I will act swiftly and appropriately. What I am suggesting is that submitting hard and factual evidence is a much more effective and direct route to justice than whispers, hysteria and innuendo posted indiscriminately on Facebook,” Casavant wrote in the press release.

Seaver added that according to an April 30 letter by Maine Attorney General Janet Mills, “preliminary investigation shows no wrongdoing” by Biddeford Police Department officials.

In the press release, Casavant called Dutremble and alleged abuse victim Matt Lauzon “vociferous” in public meetings and social media.

“Dutremble dramatically waved a folder full of ‘victim statements’ in the air, but to date, he has not submitted any written statements to the city attorney, the city manager, the city council or the mayor,” Casavant wrote.

Lauzon’s mother, Debbie Lauzon, spoke after Seaver, noting that Seaver’s husband called Matt Lauzon a “(expletive) sucker” during a phone conversation. See “Mayoral advisor to ‘step away,’” in the May 7 Courier.

Daniel Parenteau said a lack of understanding surrounding paid administrative leave may have caused confusion at a council meeting earlier in the week on Tuesday, June 2. Councilor Hurtubise, Matt Lauzon’s uncle, made a motion to take a vote on placing the officials on leave

City Attorney Harry Center, filling in for Keith Jacques, ruled the motion “illegal.”

Parenteau called Center’s opinion “convoluted” and “Ill advised.” “So this circling of wagons and only representing two employees, you effectively turn your back on 22,000 other citizens who are left to fend for themselves. I think that’s a travesty. I recommend you reconsider the option of paid administrative leave and lead from your heart instead of listening to the ill advice of paid sycophants whose only skin in the game are billable hours.”’

Read more HERE.

The Courier also reports “The city hired an attorney for Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief JoAnne Fisk amidst allegations that two former police officers sexually abused men decades ago. In an email to the Courier, City Manager wrote that under statute, “the defense and indemnification of (an) employee is allowed for an act or omission that has occurred within the course and scope of employment.Attorney Timothy Bryant, of Preti Flaherty law firm in Portland, is representing the chiefs.”

“As of the Courier’s deadline, Koehler said he had not yet received any bills from Preti Flaherty for fees associated with the chiefs’ legal representation. Preti Flaherty, which the city uses for legal assistance related to debts and bonds, is one of several firms the city has an open account with, Koehler said.”

“City Solicitor Keith Jacques, of the Biddeford firm Woodman Edmands Danylik Austin Smith & Jacques, represents the city, which Koehler said precludes that firm from representing the chiefs because of potential conflicts of interest.”

“Keith would have a conflict of interest (in representing the chief) if the chief came after us because he didn’t think he was treated right,” Koehler said.”

“In addition to Jacques’ firm and Preti Flaherty, Koehler said the city also contracts with Bernstein Shur of Portland to do some work around tax increment financing for the economic and community development office. The city also contracts with a tax evaluation specialist, he added.

“Sometimes you need a specialist,” Koehler said.”

Read more HERE.

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Laura Seaver states she’s “been harassed.” “Seaver was the first person to speak at a series of public meetings against putting Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre and Deputy Chief Joanne Fisk on paid administrative leave.” Her husband Randy Seaver “is a campaign volunteer for Mayor Alan Casavant” and was a reporter for the Courier a few years back. His “yellow journalism” demonized people in his articles. His “All Along The Watchtower” public access tv talk shows, with guest Mayor Jim Grattelo, apparently was his source for “conspiracy theories.” This IS beyond harassment! Perhaps the people of Biddeford will eventually understand that the “theories” are not “theories”, but “fact.”

The City of Biddeford has a paid attorney…..how many law firms do they have in their “pocket?”

June 18, 2015

The Courier reports ” Attorney Walter McKee, who represents Matt Lauzon, responded last week to an offer by Cumberland County District Attorney Stephanie Anderson to review Lauzon’s case for possible prosecution – but with conditions.

“I’ve never seen it before,” McKee said of the conditions Anderson asked Lauzon to accept in exchange for reviewing the case.

“A victim of a crime is entitled to have a prosecutor review what happened and make a decision whether to prosecute. To condition that review, let alone prosecution – I was dumbfounded.”

Allegations of crimes that took place in York County would generally be reviewed by the office of the York County district attorney, McKee said. However, since Lauzon’s allegations involve a police officer in a department that the district attorney’s office works with, McKee said the district attorney may want to avoid a conflict by turning the case over to another district attorney.

Anderson said she didn’t know why Slattery didn’t want to review Lauzon’s case in York County where the alleged crimes occurred.

“(The Cumberland County) office handles criminal complaints against officers,” Anderson said. “We don’t ‘conflict’ that out.”

McKee said he did find it unusual for Anderson to request that Lauzon agree to certain conditions in order for the Cumberland County office to review his case. According to McKee, Anderson wanted Lauzon to submit all his investigative materials, release medical and psychological records, and waive his rights for any report or conclusion on his allegations to remain confidential.

On his blog titled, “Tall Guy from Maine,”at http:// mattlauzon.tumblr.com, Lauzon wrote that Anderson had called him with an investigator from the Attorney General’s Office also on the line, offering to review the case. Anderson confirmed that the investigator was Detective Michael Pulire.

“In exchange, she requested I waive my rights normally entitled to a victim,” Lauzon wrote. “After talking to multiple experts, I could not find a single one that had ever seen such a request presented to a victim.”

Read more HERE.

June 20, 2015

PPH reports “Cumberland County District Attorney Stephanie Anderson says she will not prosecute allegations of sexual abuse by a former Biddeford police officer because the man who says he was abused did not agree to a list of conditions, including that he turn over additional information and provide his medical records.

The Attorney General’s Office was called in to investigate the case because the Biddeford Police Department might have a conflict investigating one of its former officers and because of the allegations against the department command staff. Similarly, the York County District Attorney’s Office – which would normally prosecute a case of sexual molestation in that county – opted out of the case to avoid the appearance of a conflict because of its working relationship with Biddeford police.

Brian MacMaster, head of investigations for the Attorney General’s Office, asked Anderson to consider taking the case as the prosecutor who would review the evidence and, if warranted, pursue a criminal case.

Anderson said her decision not to agree to take the case should not be construed as exonerating Dodd, though she would not elaborate.

She said some other district attorney or prosecutors in the Attorney General’s Office could take on the case.” Read more HERE.

**********

The “spotlight” is on high! How much more can the A.G.’s office and the DA’s concoct for excuses when the reasons for “brushing this under the rug” are so blatantly obvious.

June 25, 2015

Ben Meiklejohn reports “BREAKING NEWS: The Biddeford-Saco-Old Orchard Beach Courier, reporter Ben Meiklejohn and managing editor Molly Lovell-Keely being sued by former police officer Norman Gaudette, represented by attorney Gene Libby, for reporting on allegations that Gaudette sexually abused boys decades ago.”

WCSH6 news report, view HERE.

PPH reports “Retired officer Norman Gaudette and his wife sue Mainely Media LLC, an editor and a reporter, accusing them of publishing false and misleading information on an issue that has roiled the city.

Attorney Gene Libby who filed the lawsuit on behalf of Norman and Joanne Gaudette called the 29 articles published in the Biddeford-Saco-Old Orchard Beach Courier since April 9 an unsubstantiated “smear campaign” against Norman Gaudette that has “wrought havoc” on his family.

The lawsuit against Mainely Media LLC, editor Molly Lovell-Keely and reporter Ben Meiklejohn was filed in York County Superior Court in Alfred. It comes on the heels of another defamation lawsuit filed by Gaudette on June 1 against former Biddeford police Detective Terry Davis over a letter Davis wrote to the Courier about Gaudette and statements attributed to Davis in the newspaper.

“You can only be abusive and irresponsible and attempt to smear an individual for so long before you are held responsible,” Libby said in a phone call Thursday. “My anger at the Courier is because it has abused its journalistic privilege by publishing misleading and false information that has done an extensive amount of damage to the family of the Gaudettes.”

Lovell-Keely and Meiklejohn responded separately to emails seeking comment, saying they “have been advised not to comment at this point in time.”

Although many other news outlets have mentioned Gaudette and the accusations against him in recent news reports, Libby said only Mainely Maine LLC and its staff are being sued because other news outlets reported only information that has been verified or attributed to an identified source.

“I don’t see any other media engaged in such shoddy journalism,” Libby said.

Read more HERE.

**********

A few points to ponder:

Gene R. Libby, Dodd’s attorney, served as District Attorney for York County between 1981-85. He continues to serve York County as General Counsel to the York County Commissioners and all County departments (Deeds, Probate, Sheriff, Corrections) since 1998.

Randy Seaver “is a campaign volunteer for Mayor Alan Casavant” and was a reporter for the Courier a few years back. His “yellow journalism” demonized people in his articles. Today, he has a close relationship with the Mayor.

The Courier was willing to report the other side of the story, giving the victims an avenue in which to speak. Is freedom of speech denied in the City of Biddeford? You bet!

Biddeford I’ll See You In Court, click here.

Is Attorney Libby being “selective” with his lawsuits?

July 8, 2015

WMTW8 reporter David Charns reports “Attorney Gene Libby dropped his client. Gene Libby said Wednesday he is no longer representing former Sgt. Stephen Dodd.

“We can confirm that this firm is no longer able to represent Mr. Dodd due to our firm’s obligations under the Maine Rules of Professional Conduct governing attorneys,” Libby said.

Libby would not elaborate on a reason, due to attorney-client privilege. Read more HERE.

**********

As an attorney, a former prosecutor, wouldn’t Libby have known his obligations “under the Maine Rules of Professional Conduct” prior to his agreement to represent Sgt. Dodd?

August 1, 2015

WLOB Radio Talkin’ Maine with Guest Matt Lauzon, click HERE.

August 6, 2015

Mayor Alan Casavant releases first video update on sexual abuse allegations, view HERE.

August 13, 2015

PPH reports “Biddeford Mayor Alan Casavant announced on Thursday that he has reached out to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch for federal guidance on how to best investigate allegations that city police officers sexually abused young men years ago.

Casavant released the letter, dated July 6, to the media and also went on YouTube to explain in more detail why he asked the federal government for help.” Read more HERE.

View Video HERE.

August 18, 2015

Municipal Officers Meeting, public addressing the council, view HERE.

PPH reports “State police monitor Biddeford Council meeting. Read more HERE.

Matt Lauzon questions:

“Why does Biddeford have an army of State Police cars there tonight?

I’ve received threats. No support.

I raise concerns about my family. No support.

David E. Dutremble receives threats. No Support.

The Mayor pretends he has a threat. Many, many thousands of dollars wasted for his PR strategy to cover up the fact that he has received the “purported” statement he wanted.

Action must be taken tonight unless the Mayor is committed to obstructing justice.”

WGME13 news
Protesters attend Biddeford City Council meeting, view HERE.

August 19, 2015

WMTW8 news reports “Biddeford mayor announces receiving letter about sex abuse allegations.” View HERE.

Atty. Walt McKee (Matt Lauzon’s atty.) Response to continued inaction by Biddeford City Council and Demand for independent city investigation, click here.

Former Biddeford Police Officer Devoe’s statement, click here. Per Matt Lauzon “To leave absolutely no room for doubt, here is the full statement from this former Biddeford Police Detective. There is absolutely no excuse for the Mayor to keep stalling.”

Further evidence, here is another statement from a former Biddeford Police Detective that the Mayor and Council have been aware of since May. Davis statement, click here.  “There are more statements being held in private. These are not the only brave men to come forward. And I hope more will come soon.” (Matt Lauzon)

Rob Brown’s urgent plea to Governor Paul LePage regarding child rape scandal and cover-up in Biddeford Maine, view HERE.

August 26, 2015

WMTW8 news reports “Maine Attorney General will not charge former Biddeford officer. Office cites ‘insufficient evidence’. View report HERE.

PPH reports “Maine attorney general won’t charge former Biddeford officer accused of molesting boys.” Read more HERE.

August 27, 2015

PPH reports “Biddeford City Councilwill meet Tuesday for the first time since the Attorney General’s Office announced it will not file charges against a former police officer.

The City Council, which has for months listened to pleas for action from alleged victims and their supporters, will meet Tuesday in private session to review several documents about the allegations and discuss what, if anything, the council should do in response now that the criminal investigation is closed. Mayor Alan Casavant said the council will consider those documents – which include a letter from a former police officer – and other information officials have received that is not in the public domain to decide if an internal investigation is appropriate.

Meanwhile, Lauzon made clear Thursday that he is not giving up his campaign to have Beaupre put on administrative leave because he was in charge of the department at the time of the alleged abuse. He said he believes more people – including current and former police officers – will feel more free to come forward with new evidence if Beaupre is put on leave.” Read more HERE.

WMTW8 news reports “Matt Lauzon ‘not surprised’ by AG’s conclusion. Top prosecutor’s office declines charges.” View report HERE.

WGME13 news report, view HERE.

PPH reports “Sex abuse turmoil far from over in Biddeford.” Read more HERE.

August 28, 2015

PPH reports “A protest will be held before a City Council meeting Tuesday. This will be a peaceful protest and a sign to our city (councilors) that people do care,” reads the ad, titled “Volunteers needed for good cause! Help stop pedophilia in Biddeford.”

The protest is expected to begin at 6 p.m. Tuesday outside of Biddeford High School. The City Council meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the school’s Little Theater.”
Read more HERE.

August 31, 2015

PPH reports “Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre, through his attorney Tim Bryant, said he is sorry no charges were filed but also criticizes what he says are baseless accusations of misconduct by him and others.

Chief Beaupre was sorry to hear last week that the attorney general announced her office has decided not to prosecute anyone in the Lauzon matter,” Bryant said in the statement. “At the same time, he has tremendous respect and admiration for the professionalism of Janet Mills and her team of investigators and senior prosecutors and the conclusion they have reached after their monthslong investigation.”

Read more HERE.

**********

This is an “eye-opener”…. Former AG Janet Mills joins Preti Flaherty, read more HERE.

Tim Bryant, the attorney representing Chief Beaupre, is from the same law firm associated with AG Janet Mills.

Janet Mills became the Attorney General of Maine on January 6, 2009. When Republicans gained control of the Maine Legislature in 2010, Mills, a Democrat, was not reelected to another term. She joined the law firm Preti Flaherty in February 2011. When Democrats regained control of the Legislature in the 2012 elections, she was again chosen to be Attorney General.

September 1, 2015

Municipal Officers Meeting (plus ending of City Council Meeting), view HERE.
“Biddeford Council just came out of executive session and announced they will not be moving forward with an independent investigation following the AG’s ruling not to charge a former police officer accused of raping an underage boy, several years ago.”

WMTW8 News reports “Biddeford City Council votes against independent investigation.” View HERE.

PPH reports ” The Biddeford City Council unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday saying it will not suspend the city’s police chief or launch an investigation into the police department, disappointing victim advocates who want city leaders to address allegations of sexual abuse against a former officer.” Read more HERE.

September 3, 2015

PPH reports “A crowded field of candidates is running for municipal office in Biddeford, with voters set to choose the next mayor and fill all nine City Council seats on Nov. 3. Business consultant Daniel Parenteau is challenging Mayor Alan Casavant. Read more HERE.

October 31, 2015

PPH reports “Two lawsuits filed in connection with Biddeford sex abuse allegations. The lawsuits were filed on behalf of Larry Ouellette and Matthew Lauzon. Read more HERE.

Matt Lauzon Complaint

Larry Ouellette Complaint

WMTW8 News report, click here.

**********

Accountability extends beyond Mayor Alan Casavant and Police Chief Roger Beaupre.

Related: Ready. Aim. Fire: Special, super secret mystery guest! Ms. D.L.! Click here.

Biddeford Maine – Sexual Abuse Cases – View video HERE.

Governor Paul LePage’s Comment During An Event Gets Him In Hot Water Again

Governor LePage attended an event Friday in North Berwick  set up for attendees of Pratt & Whitney’s annual employee appreciation day. His comment has sparked debate on both sides of the issue.

Anyone who has not been subjected to the lies, misinformation, demoniztion by the media will not understand Governor LePage’s comment.

BDN reports “As he strapped into the F-35 Lightning II demonstrator machine, Maine’s Republican governor joked to a nearby Lockheed Martin Corp. guide: “I want to find the Press Herald building and blow it up.”

“In July 2011, he scolded reporters, telling them “you folks tend to not like to write the truth,” and in March 2012, he told students at Waterville Junior High School that “ reading newspapers in the state of Maine is like paying someone to lie to you.”

“On other occasions, he’s made clear his preference for television reporting over print journalism and his disdain for newspapers. LePage rarely grants interviews to any print journalists, but partisan politics likely contributes to his special emphasis on the Press Herald and its sister papers, the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Sentinel. The newspapers are owned by S. Donald Sussman, a major donor to Democratic candidates and husband of 1st District U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree, a Democrat with whom LePage has often clashed.

“Television station WMTW reporter Paul Merrill later asked LePage if he had any targets. The governor said: The Portland Press Herald and the Bangor Daily News.”

“In response media reports of the event, the governor’s Twitter account soon sent out a message: “Threatened? It was a joke, folks.”

“LePage has long had a frosty relationship with Maine newspapers.”

PPH reports “Adrienne Bennett, the governor’s spokeswoman, said in an email that LePage was clearly joking and was responding to a question. LePage has had a tense relationship with the media — newspapers in particular — since he took office in January 2011. At least twice, he has told students that his biggest fear is newspapers. He once said that buying a copy of a newspaper is like paying someone to lie to you. LePage has a long record of strong statements and jokes gone wrong.”

Per the media’s modus operendi they will twist, turn, inflate an issue to sell a newspaper. If they were sincere in bringing the truth to the public why have they neglected to do so with the following:

The cover up of election fraud by secretary of State Matt Dunlap/ Charlie Summers and the Attorney General’s office, as well as the Post Office’s complicity in this crime.  The general public has not heard about this as the media refused to report on this.

The refusal of our politicians taken action on the evidence presented to them regarding the fraud, waste and abuse of Medicaid funding and refusal of Attorney General to investigate.

The controlled media has harmed many Mainers by refusing to print the “other side of the story.” The official corruption and theft of homes and small businesses, fraudulent foreclosures, kidnapping of children…the list goes on! Victims are further victimized by our mainstream media!

Another issue that warrants investigation is HUD, City of Biddeford office.

This is just for starters….where is the public outrage on this?

Those who do not read the newspaper are uninformed, those who do…are misinformed.

Maine Court Judges Exposed!

Falmouth Today, Editor Michael Doyle, unveils more judicial corruption within Maine courts.

Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen and Judges named in this article are the same players in the theft of my business property,  my home and property in Arundel, Maine.

I went public with a public access t.v. talk show, The Maine Forum, from April 18, 2001 to July 2002 when (now former mayor) Donna Dion and (now former city councilor) Jim Grattelo banned me from Biddeford Public Access. My reasons for going public was due to the controlled mainstream media’s refusal to print or broadcast the truth that people had a right to know. I was tired of having issues brushed under the rug. The Maine Forum was a vehicle used to educate and inform the public on issues that involved everyone at the local, county, state and federal levels. It was time to take a stand for my (our) rights before we no longer had any rights left. Many wonderful and interesting people from Maine to California were guests on my program.

The July 4, 2001 program “What Price Justice?’ featured Philip Castora, a licensed Private Investigator, who gave a report containing his opinions and conclusions with respect to various public documents relative to his investigation into fraudulent confiscations of property through the concerted actions of city officials, bankers, the courts…….and let’s not forget William Zafirson, HAZA Auctioneer who went crying to the mayor because I mentioned his name on my program.

Read more, click here.

Read more about:

Jens Peter Bergen, Esq.

Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen, one of the client’s charged in the Zumba Prostitution Case, was also involved in the theft of Dorothy Lafortune’s home in concert with officials in the City of Biddeford and Biddeford District Court Judge Christine Foster.

As with both cases, Atty. Bergen knows, or should know, the law. In the Zumba case he chose to commit a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as an attorney. Since the beginning of this case it was obvious there would be a double standard of justice and selective prosecutions where it concerned public officials/attorneys. Attorney Bergen and his cronies in the City of Biddeford, including Judge Christine Foster, are NOT above the law! This is NOT the first time he violates the law! The proof is in the pudding!

Wouldn’t you agree that Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen, who knows, or should know, the law and pled guilty to violating state law is conduct unbecoming an attorney and in violation of BAR rules and professional conduct? He gets away with just a slap on the wrist and still practices law in Maine.

And what about the remaining suspects?
2-14-13

Freedom of Access Act request, December 27, 2012

Second Freedom of Access Act request, January 20, 2013

On January 28, 2013 a response was received to my FOA request to Justina McGettigan, Deputy D.A. from D.A. Kathryn Slattery. D.A. Slattery provided the list of approximate 60 individuals charged. The request was for the remaining 150+ suspects charged.

FOIA – clarification, February 7, 2013

Why is it so difficult to get a response from the District Attorney’s Office to a FOA request? Why will the D.A. not uphold Maine statute and supply the list of the remaining 150+ suspects charged?

Atty. Bergen represented the owner of a Maine Realty company and aid and abet the theft of Lafortune’s home and aided and abetted in the attempt to extort $35,000 from her. Her persistence in pursuing this fraud against her led to the mysterious disappearance of the case file in Biddeford District Court. 

She was not afforded the opportunity, consideration and fairness in the reporting of her side of the story. She was not ensured a fair trial. She was maliciously prosecuted when (now former) D.A. Mark Lawrence had her evidence in hand and working with her. She lost her home, removed by a 13 member SWAT team, armed and masked, arrested and charged with criminal trespass upon her own property and thrown out into the street like a wild animal. She most certainly resents the fact that she paid the salaries of these official “scabs” to defraud and “rape” her.

See summary of Criminal Trespass charge, click here.

Judge Arthur Brennan, click here and here.

Judge Thomas Humphrey

Paper trail to my complaint against Judge Christine Foster, dismissed by the Committee on Judicial Responsibility and Disability also leads to Judge Humphrey.

Related, click here.

Well, if  “you haven’t heard of a docket, any docket, being removed from the court system locally or statewide”, you’ve got more proof that this is “procedure” within Maine’s courtrooms.

Take Notice:

Members on the Committee on Judicial Responsibility and Disability include Judges Paul Fritzsche, Robert E. Crowley. Is this not a conflict of interest? Judge Thomas Humphrey previously sat on the committee. He is the current Chief Justice of the Superior Courts.

The Committee on Judicial Responsibility and Disability is a Personal appointment which does not require a public hearing or approval of the State Legislature. If Governor LePage’s priority is to “put Maine people ahead of politics”, he must remove the members with this committee.

The corruption is rampant, blatant and more visible with greater exposure. It’s time to take this “bull by the horns.”

Kennebunk (ME) Prostitution Case

6-5-13

Alexis Wright was sentenced on Friday morning, May 31st,  in York County Superior Court in Alfred.

Under a plea agreement, she is set to serve 10 months in jail and pay more than $57,000 in fines and restitution to the state. As part of the deal, three felonies against Wright have been reduced to Class D misdemeanors.

Kennebunk police have said they are now investigating another 40 before deciding whether to charge them. They announced in a news release that they will conduct “an analysis of the quality of evidence investigators possess in order to determine if proof beyond a reasonable doubt has been reached.”

4-5-13

Mark Strong Sr. was released from jail today, five days before the end of his 20 day sentence.  Would you, or I, get this kind of special treatment. What gives?????  I realize that “criminals” get time deducted for good behavior, however, this case had a smell to it from the beginning. Did Strong have more on them than they did on him? Was there selective prosecution and double standard of justice in this case?

4-2-13

Alexis Wright, her attorney Sarah Churchill, and York County prosecutors have been meeting in negotiations behind closed doors. Wright has pleaded not guilty to 106 counts, including several felony counts, the most serious of which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

On Friday, March 29th, Wright pleaded guilty to 20 charges that she worked as a prostitute for more than a year and a half in her Kennebunk Zumba studio.

Wright was ordered to pay $57,000 in fines and restitution to the state.

The deal reached Friday did not include an agreement on jail time. Prosecutors are recommending Wright serve 10 months in jail. She is due to be sentenced May 31.

In return for the guilty pleas, prosecutors reduced three felony charges for federal tax and state welfare violations to misdemeanors. Atty. Churchhill stated “The hard part in this case is, there’s a whole lot more to this story. Just because the story doesn’t come out in the criminal case doesn’t mean it won’t come out. There’s obviously a backstory to why this all started and why it went on for as long as it did and whether my client wanted it to happen.”

“The lead prosecutor in the case, York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan, said Wright’s plea does not end the case. So far, 66 of more than 140 people in Wright’s records have been charged. Police put charges against others on hold while the cases against Wright and Strong dominated their attention. It remains to be seen, of the others, how many will be charged.”

How does a federal income tax alleged violation get prosecuted in Maine Superior Court and minimized to a misdemeanor?

People are still questioning if the DA made the deal so the other prominent names do not become public. They wonder why the Press Herald or the News Media have never gone after that list.

Update of 2-14-13 Freedom of Access requests. FOIA – clarification, February 7, 2013

FOIA response from D.A. Kathryn Slattery, dated February 14, 2013 claiming the remaining suspects have not been charged.

Is there a smell to this? Did Strong have more on the Kennebunk PD than they had on him?

3-28-13

On March 6, Strong was found guilty on all 12 counts of promotion of prostitution and one count of conspiracy to promote prostitution.

Defense attorneys in the Strong case filed a motion seeking arrest of judgment in the case, urging Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills to reverse the conviction on the grounds that the charges against him were too vague to defend against. Mills denied that motion.

Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills sentenced Mark Strong Sr. to 20 days in jail and a total of $3,000 in fines for his role in an alleged Kennebunk prostitution business.

Strong’s attorneys, Daniel Lilley and Tina Nadeau,  announced plans to file an appeal in his case, but after sentencing on March 21st he withdrew an appeal seeking to overturn the jury’s verdicts. That clears the way for prosecutors to call him as a witness if Wright goes to trial, because his Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination no longer apply.

Atty. Sarah Churchill, representing Wright, filed a motion to buy more time for  settlement negotiations to play out.

3-16-13

York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan said “taxpayers should be pleased” by the time-consuming and costly law enforcement effort that has resulted, so far, in the conviction of Strong.

“Strong’s attorney, Daniel Lilley, frequently described the case as overkill, saying his client faced difficult odds against the state’s “unlimited resources” and at one point before the trial referred to what he called “prosecutors on steroids.”

But McGettigan defended the effort on Wednesday after the guilty verdict was announced, saying police and the district attorney’s office are obligated to prosecute crimes under Maine law.

“The List,” as it came to be known, included some prominent local residents. Curiosity about who else is on it has helped propel a local scandal to the global media stage.”

“McGettigan said the statute of limitations for engaging a prostitute is three years from the date of the alleged incident, and investigators will continue compiling evidence in the coming weeks to determine if there is enough to charge additional individuals.”

“Lilley said he was “disappointed” with the verdict but he never argues with a jury.” 

McGettigan did speak to the media. “We’re pleased that the jury found the evidence convincing,” McGettigan said. “They believed the overwhelming evidence we showed them that Mark Strong was guilty of promoting prostitution.”

Strong did not testify and Wright was not called as a witness.

McGettigan said she and Atty. Churchill, Wright’s attorney, met on Wednesday, March 13th  for what the prosecutor called “a settlement conference.”

Assistant Attorney General William Stokes has said that prosecutors from his office who specialize in tax prosecutions and benefits fraud will prosecute Wright on the tax-related charges.

Wright is alleged to have received more than $10,000 in state aid, including food stamps, that she was not eligible for because of her income from prostitution. Even though that money was made illegally, it’s considered income.

 As of December 21, 2012 64 men have been charged. Another 32 men charged as clients in the case have entered not guilty pleas in writing through their attorneys, avoiding in-person court appearances. The remainder have yet to reach their arraignment dates.

Update of 2-14-13 Freedom of Access requests. FOIA – clarification, February 7, 2013

FOIA response from D.A. Kathryn Slattery, dated February 14, 2013 claiming the remaining suspects have not been charged.

Do you smell something?

3-6-13

Attorneys on both sides made closing statements to jurors Tuesday, foregoing dozens of witnesses who had appeared on each party’s pretrial lists.

Strong found guilty on all 12 counts of promotion of prostitution and one count of conspiring to promote prostitution. Each of the 13 counts, Class D crimes, are subject to a maximum penalty of up to 1 year incarceration and a maximum fine of up to $2,000.

Strong will be sentenced March 19 and has been released on personal recognizance. Until then, he is not allowed to have any contact with Wright.

3-5-13

Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan sent an email over the weekend to Justice Nancy Mills, and Strong’s defense attorneys, listing only eight more witnesses she intends to call for the state before resting the case.

The final eight witnesses are all men convicted of engaging Alexis Wright for prostitution. Prosecutors at the start of Strong’s trial had intended to call 18 men convicted of engaging Wright. McGettigan’s email does not explain the change in plan.

McGettigan’s revised witness list also leaves off 11 police witnesses and multiple representatives of financial institutions and cellphone service providers.

To prove the charge of promotion of prostitution, prosecutors do not necessarily have to show that Strong benefited financially from his relationship with Wright. Under state law, promotion of prostitution could also be defined as aiding someone to engage in prostitution or leasing a place regularly used for prostitution.

Mark Strong’s defense team have maintained that notes found during a search of his client’s office prove he was investigating OfficerPresby and others at the Kennebunk Police Department and would continue grilling the department’s top investigator about the topic Monday. Lilley maintains his client was charged in tis case as payback for research he was doing into past misconduct by Kennebunk police, most significantly the officer put in charge of the prostitution investigation.

Lilley’s team has suggested Strong is the victim of a police conspiracy to keep the information about past misconduct from becoming public. Lilley has determined during cross examination of several police investigators in the trial that Presby was allowed to temporarily take possession of a hard drive found at Strong’s office.

Kennebunk police Patrol Officer Audra Presby returned to the witness stand on Monday.

The combative tenor that marked Presby’s cross-examination Friday resumed quickly Monday morning.

The crossfire between attorneys even cut off the judge presiding over the case.

Strong and Lilley have maintained he was pulled into the prostitution case as police retaliation for the research he was doing into Presby and other members of the department.

But under continued questioning, Officer Presby said she believed Strong had begun investigating the police only after police conducted a search of Wright’s Kennebunk properties five months earlier.

In a surprise move, the prosecution rested its case late Monday morning without calling any of the convicted “johns” to the stand.

Strong’s attorneys filed motions seeking to dismiss 12 of the 13 charges against him and another for overall acquittal.

On Tuesday morning defense attorneys for Mark Strong argued two separate motions. Judge Mills denied both motions.

Motion to Dismiss.

The last live witness called by the defense in the case came Tuesday morning, when Lilley called Strong’s brother, James Strong, to the stand.

James Strong, an attorney,  told the court he urged state police not to allow Kennebunk police to handle computer evidence seized from his brother’s property because of the potentially embarrassing information Mark Strong allegedly kept about the town department.

Closing arguments scheduled for this afternoon.

The jury is scheduled to begin deliberations Wednesday.

3-3-13

On Wednesday afternoon, February 27th, Judge Mills allowed about 100 sexually explicit images to be turned over to the jury. A computer analyst, Detective Frederick Williams of the Saco Police Department, briefly took the stand as a witness twice Wednesday and testified that he analyzed a computer hard drive seized from a raid of Strong’s home and insurance business in Thomaston on July 10, 2012, and recovered emails between Wright and Strong that included a spreadsheet of a list of names.

On Thursday, the jury watched more explicit videos.

Patrol Officer Audra Presby, who led the local investigation into the alleged prostitution business, took the witness stand for the first time Thursday afternoon and returned to the stand on Friday for continued questioning. Cross-examination of Officer Presby triggered sharp exchanges between Atty. Dan Lilley and D.A. Justina McGettigan.

Presby testified that she linked Strong to the prostitution case after seeing him in a sex video with Wright, then matching his voice to recorded conversations with her.She is expected to return to the stand Monday, along with several other Kennebunk police officers and possibly some of the men who have been convicted of engaging Wright for prostitution. The most dramatic moment Friday came as Lilley questioned Presby about her use of the word “pimp” in one of her police reports and asked her to define the word.

Prosecutors may be forced to pay nearly $23,000 to cover legal fees of the man they’re prosecuting. Defense attorneys filed an application electronically Sunday to compel the state to cover some of Strong’s legal costs. In its application to recoup the legal costs associated with the appeal, the defense team states that Lilley spent 38 hours, worth a total of $14,250, on the Maine Supreme Judicial Court excursion. Nadeau is listed as spending 42.5 hours on the appeal at a lesser per-hour fee, totaling $8,075 in legal fees. Another attorney at the firm contributed $500 in billable time to the appeal, and the team added $99.33 in printing and binding costs.

Trial resumes Monday, March 4th.

2-26-13

In the hearing Friday, the town of Kennebunk’s attorney Natalie Burns told the court that police personnel records are confidential under state law. But Lilley disagreed, saying Strong’s constitutional right to a fair trial “trumps” the state confidentiality law. A motion was filed by email Sunday that Strong is legally entitled to the complete personnel records of all Kennebunk police officers who are scheduled to testify at his trial. The motion asked that the court dismiss all 13 pending charges against Strong, that the case be dismissed  and if Justice Nancy Mills declines to dismiss the case, prosecutors be ordered to release police personnel records, and asks the judge to inform the jury that prosecutors have “violated Defendant Strong’s Constitutional rights” by depriving him of favorable evidence and that prosecutors had been aware of the “weakness of their case.

Motion to Dismiss.

Trial resumed on Monday February 25th.

Maine State Police Detective Herbert Leighton and Detective Terry James returned to the witness stand.Lilley pursues his argument that Kennebunk Officer Audra Presby, the subject of Strong’s alleged expose, had an opportunity to tamper with evidence in the case.”Presby has yet to testify in the trial. Less than two hours before she was scheduled to take the witness stand Thursday afternoon, the court received a letter from an attorney representing the town of Kennebunk and its police department, stating that past personnel records at the department are regularly purged in accordance with the officers’ union contract. As a result, a written reprimand Lilley planned to reference during his cross-examination of Presby was no longer in her file. The news surprised the defense team and Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills, who scolded prosecutors and town lawyers for the late announcement despite knowledge since July that Lilley would be pursuing the police payback argument.”

A computer expert says Strong deleted his email a day after police raided a fitness instructor’s dance studio, office and home in February 2012.

Judge Mills refused to dismiss charges.

Lilley’s motion to dismiss argues that the prosecution had violated his constitutional rights by failing to release key evidence that could have been used in his defense before the trial, and failing to meet past deadlines to release that evidence.
The trial resumes.

2-22-13

Earlier this month Atty. Daniel Lilley, sent a letter to York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan informing her that he intends to call her or the other prosecutor on her team as a witness “to explore the issue of selective prosecution — bias or prejudice.” McGettigan sent a response letter dated Feb. 14 to the judge Nancy Mills objecting to Lilley’s proposed move. McGettigan also asked the court in her letter of objection to address Lilley’s behavior in the case. “While we have not responded to Mr. Lilley’s emails in which he suggests that the Attorney General’s Office has ‘appeared to … rubber stamp’ our appeal, and other baseless claims, we hope the court will address with counsel the vituperative tone of counsel’s emails, court filings and statements on the record regarding the District Attorney’s Office and the Attorney General’s Office,” McGettigan said in her letter.

On Tuesday, February 19th, Justice Nancy Mills ruled that defense attorneys for Strong cannot call Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan or Assistant District Attorney Patrick Gordon to the witness stand in an attempt to prove their client was targeted by “selective prosecution.”

“Mills also shook off attorney alerts that she may have a conflict of interest in the case, due to peripheral relationships with the attorney general’s office and a law firm that represented one of the lead investigators, and said she will not recuse herself from the ongoing case.” She decided not to recuse herself from the case — as well as the forthcoming Wright case — after acknowledging that sister-in-law Janet Mills has been named the state’s attorney general. The attorney general’s office signed off on the prosecution’s recent appeal to the law court, but both Assistant Attorney General William Stokes and York County District Attorney Kathryn Slattery each wrote letters telling the court they are satisfied Janet Mills has been screened from the cases and Nancy Mills’ impartiality has remained untainted.”

“Both Stokes and Slattery wrote, however, that they would support Mills if she decided to step down to “avoid … the appearance of a conflict.”

Mills also said she thinks she could act impartially despite the fact that her husband’s Skowhegan law firm, Wright & Mills, represented a lead investigator from the Kennebunk Police Department, Audra Presby, during a 2011 protection from abuse hearing. Her husband, Peter Mills, is Executive Director of the Maine Turnpike Authority.

Defense attorneys Sarah Churchill, representing Wright, and Lilley told Justice Nancy Mills on Tuesday that their clients think she should continue to oversee the cases.

(With all of these conflicts of interest, defense attorneys also agree that Judge Mills continue on this case? York County Superior Court judges recused themselves from the case as there were concerns that York County judges may know some of the witnesses. )

Jury selection resumed Wednesday morning after nearly four-weeks of delays, twists and turns,with a jury of 10 men and six women selected. Trial began on Wednesday, February 20th.

In his opening statements “Lilley hinted that he would pursue a long-expected argument that Strong was the target of police payback for an investigation he was doing into alleged misconduct at the Kennebunk Police Department and plans to make a case that police had an “ulterior motive” to pursue Strong.”

D.A. “McGettigan delivered a less lengthy opening statement than her opponent, but told jurors that prosecutors will provide evidence proving Strong knew full well that prostitution was being conducted at the Zumba studio he helped get organized.

She said subsequent police investigations turned up emails, text messages and other communications and electronic evidence indicating Strong helped participate in the prostitution business by, among other things, running license plate numbers of the individuals allegedly paying for sex at Wright’s studio.”

On Thursday, attorneys for the prosecution and defense  clashed over the testimony of a Kennebunk pizza parlor manager and Lilley asked Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills to strike his testimony from the record. The judge denied the motion, convinced by York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan that the overall testimony could help establish that prostitution was being conducted at Wright’s Zumba studio, which was next door to the pizza parlor.

On Thursday, attorney Natalie Burns from Jensen Baird Gardner & Henry, representing the police department, delivered a letter to the court saying personnel records of police officer Audra Presby, key witness in the case, may have been purged. The letter arrived less than two hours before Presby was scheduled to testify and indefinitely delayed her appearance. Officer Audra Presby, who led the investigation into the alleged prostitution business, is the central figure in Strong’s allegations of police retaliation in the case.  Shortly before 2 p.m. on Thursday Judge Mills told attorneys from both sides in the case that Presby would not testify during the afternoon session while questions raised by Burns are investigated.

Mills noted that Burns seemed to suggest in her correspondence that the department’s law firm had been in touch with the district attorney’s office regarding the personnel records as early as Feb. 10, and the judge seemed irritated the Thursday letter represented the first time she or the defense received word of the dispute.

Mills said she did not believe Presby’s personnel records were “confidential” and added that she already ruled they were “relevant” to Strong’s argument of police retaliation in the case.

Court broke on Thursday afternoon and resumed Friday morning.

On Friday the defense pounced on the deletion of files of the lead investigator. Lilly argued “Let’s assume Officer Presby committed a crime and the chief knew about it, all he has to say is, ‘There was no disciplinary action’ and that would be the end of it. That’s the easy way out to hide the file if one were to be cynical about it. What are they trying to protect?And does it trump our rights to discovery?”

In subsequent questioning Chief MacKenzie “admitted that the written disciplinary action that came from the investigation into the relationship between Presby and Higgins is still kept in a file cabinet, even though it has been purged from Presby’s official personnel file.” Lilley requested that document Friday, and Burns said she would produce it for the court. Presby and Higgins will likely be called to testify next week.

Atty. Lilley filed a motion to dismiss charges in part because of  continued problems. Defense attorneys are seeking a mis-trial to dismiss all charges against him on the grounds that prosecutors failed to release key evidence before the trial. Judge Mills said she would stop short of saying the prosecution acted in “bad faith,” but said prosecutors were only now releasing key evidence in the midst of the trial that the defense had requested last July. The procedural posture of this case has been somewhat different than she would like.

Questions still arise as to the remaining unnamed suspects who have refused to speak to police.

The total number of people expected to be summonsed is about 150, according to statements by police, prosecutors and other sources familiar with the case.

A motion filed by the Maine attorney general’s office seeks to prevent the public release of the names — which could number more than 100.

Many suspects have retained counsel and have, therefore, canceled previously scheduled interviews with investigators,” Kennebunk Lt. Anthony Bean Burpee told Maine media outlets Friday. “Many attorneys have indicated they plan to speak with York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan, who is handling the prosecution of these cases, prior to making a final decision on how best to proceed with cases against their clients.

 As of December 21, 2012 64 men have been charged. Another 32 men charged as clients in the case have entered not guilty pleas in writing through their attorneys, avoiding in-person court appearances. The remainder have yet to reach their arraignment dates.

Update of 2-14-13 Freedom of Access requests. FOIA – clarification, February 7, 2013

FOIA response from D.A. Kathryn Slattery, dated February 14, 2013 claiming the remaining suspects have not been charged.

Do you smell something? There may have been a violation of the law by Strong. Yet to be proven. However, it appears that Strong’s evidence against the Kennebunk P.D. far outweighs his violating the law. The DA cannot afford to have Strong’s evidence come out in the public. Not to mention the remainder of subjects not publicly listed…because of deals being made behind closed doors. Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen pled guilty to violating the law – and it’s NOT the first time – but he got caught this time. D.A. Slattery follows closely in the footsteps of former D.A. Mark Lawrence. Which is worse, prostitution or corruption of the officials/attorneys whom we entrust to uphold the law?)

2-15-13

The Maine Supreme Judicial Court upheld a Superior Court judge’s decision to dismiss 46 criminal counts against the defendant. The court agreed that the state had not adequately proven that the elements of invasion of privacy were present and therefore threw out 46 counts of invasion of privacy. There remains 13 counts of promotion of prostitution.

Maine Supreme Court ORDER.

2-14-13

Freedom of Access Act request, December 27, 2012

Second Freedom of Access Act request, January 20, 2013

On January 28, 2013 a response was received to my FOA request to Justina McGettigan, Deputy D.A. from D.A. Kathryn Slattery. D.A. Slattery provided the list of approximate 60 individuals charged. The request was for the remaining 150+ suspects charged.

FOIA – clarification, February 7, 2013

Why is it so difficult to get a response from the District Attorney’s Office to a FOA request? Why will the D.A. not uphold Maine statute and supply the list of the remaining 150+ suspects charged?

2.13.13

There have been many twists and turns in this case. Is this case headed to a selective prosecution and double standard of justice? Judge Nancy Mills scolded defense attorney Dan Lilley for defying a gag order, calls comments to media ‘unfortunate and unbecoming’. Wouldn’t you agree that Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen, who knows, or should know, the law and pled guilty to violating state law is conduct unbecoming an attorney and in violation of BAR rules and professional conduct? He gets away with just a slap on the wrist and still practices law in Maine. This is NOT the only time Attorney Bergen has violated the law.

The trial of Mark Strong Sr has been halted. The Maine Supreme Judicial Court will take up an appeal by the prosecution.

Prosecutors are seeking to have 46 of the original 59 counts against Strong reinstated.

Justice Nancy Mills dismissed the 46 counts related to violation of privacy last week. The prosecutors appealed to the high court and asked for the trial to be stopped until a ruling is issued.

Jury selection for the trial was conducted behind closed doors Tuesday (January 23rd) with the public and the media barred from the proceedings. The Press Herald has filed an objection with the court saying the judge’s decision violates the First and Sixth Amendments. Jurors were dismissed for the day.

Sigmund Schutz, representing the Portland Press Herald appealed the ruling to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. The jury selection process continued on at the York County Courthouse on Wednesday while awaiting an opinion from the high court on the appeal. Judge Mills  resumed jury selection.

On Thursday (24th) jury selection continued behind closed doors over PPH’s objections.  The Maine Supreme Judicial Court Thursday afternoon ordered the remainder of jury selection in the trial of Kennebunk prostitution defendant Mark Strong Sr. to be conducted in public. The court, in a 6-1 decision, ruled that Mills should not have barred the public from being present during voir dire, while potential jurors were questioned. Justice Saufley stopped the proceedings because of arguments that the secret jury selection in the case was improper.

The state’s highest court agreed with an appeal filed by attorney Sigmund Schutz, representing the Portland Press Herald and parent company MaineToday Media, that Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills erred by blocking access to questioning of jury candidates.

Justice Nancy Mills dismissed 46 of 59 misdemeanor counts against Mark Strong Sr., a day after the state’s highest court ruled the closed jury selection process had to be opened to the public.

Prosecutors appealed the dismissal, bringing the proceeding to an abrupt halt. Remaining members of the jury pool were sent home Friday, just as they had been the day before.

Trial in limbo pending appeal.

The state’s high court ruled Monday (January 28th) afternoon that the stalled trial can proceed while an appeal of dismissed charges against him is pending. The state Supreme Judicial Court, however, issued an order Monday authorizing the trial judge, Justice Nancy Mills, to decide whether to proceed with the trial with the 13 remaining charges against Strong.

The 46 counts against Strong that Mills dismissed were all for charges of violation of privacy and conspiracy to violate the privacy of Wright’s prostitution customers for recording their encounters with Wright in her Zumba studio.

The defense and the judge aren’t happy with delays in the trial of the business partner in a prostitution scandal at a Zumba studio. Prosecutors aren’t happy, either, after the judge dismissed 46 of 59 charges.

Maine’s highest court will expedite an appeal scheduling oral arguments on the matter for Feb. 13.

Judge Nancy Mills scolded defense attorney Dan Lilley for defying a gag order, calls comments to media ‘unfortunate and unbecoming’. Mills read segments of articles published by the Portland Press Herald and television station WGME-13 as examples of comments made Friday by Defense Attorney Daniel Lilley,  in part that prosecutors must “fish or cut bait” and “get off their asses” in a trial that has gone in fits and starts in the past week.

“[Those comments are] just unfortunate and unbecoming for an attorney,” Mills told Lilley Tuesday. “Any further defiances of my order will be dealt with by me.”

Mills said she was alerted to published comments made by Lilley and his client on Monday by York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan in an email.

Oral arguments before the justices of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court were heard Wednesday afternoon. 

Up for the state’s highest court to decide is whether he will be tried on all 59 charges originally brought by prosecutors or just 13 counts of promotion of prostitution.

In a pretrial hearing on Jan. 25, Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills granted a defense motion todismiss all 46 privacy invasion charges against Strong.

Since then, the trial of Strong has been on hold for more than two weeks as a prosecution appeal of that decision has worked its way through the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

After the law court issues its ruling on the appeal, Strong will return to trial at the Superior Court level on either 13 or 59 charges, depending on whether the higher court upholds or overturns the dismissal of the 46 privacy invasion counts.

On Tuesday, January 15th Atty. Daniel Lilley appeared in Cumberland County Superior Court before Justice Nancy Mills with a request to postpone Strong’s trial, which is scheduled to begin Tuesday, Jan. 22, in York County Superior Court in Alfred. Mills denied that request as well as a motion to change the venue of the scheduled trial.

On Friday morning, January 18th,  two hearings were held  in Cumberland County Superior Court before Justice Nancy Mills. Open to the public was Lilley’s motion seeking to withdraw from the case. The second hearing, held behind closed doors, was for Strong and prosecutors to discuss possible plea deals with a judge.

Lilley filed a motion to withdraw based on the fact that he hasn’t been paid and the inability to prepare a case against the state’s unlimited resources. States Lilley “it is impossible for me to adequately prepare a case to defend this guy with a lack of resources and the fact that his business was destroyed and he has no income. Because of the publicity in the case, he has serious financial problems.”

Motion to Withdraw, click here.

Atty. Dan Lilley wants off the case

Justice Nancy Mills denied Lilley’s request to withdraw. “We find ourselves in a ‘David and Goliath’ scenario against a state with unlimited resources, and which has brought most to bear,” Lilley told the court. “The devastation of the charges against my client and his … economic well-being have been substantial.”  

Video, click here.

No plea deal for Kennebunk prostitution case defendant.  Mark Strong wants a deal with no jail time. To be acceptable to Strong, he said, the penalty “couldn’t be jail time, and it couldn’t be a big fine.”  The plea deal talks were held with Justice Thomas Humphrey.

The case is scheduled to begin Tuesday, January 22th. It’s a case that has captured international attention and has been described by the lead defense attorney as an “over-the-top” misuse of government resources.”

Prosecutors witness list includes members of law enforcement and representatives of banks and cellphone companies.
Witness list, click here.

The 18 men who pleaded guilty or pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of engaging a prostitute are among the 66 people who have been charged so far as clients of Alexis Wright and are on the witness list.

Two men plead guilty in prostitution case. As the Kennebunk Police Department and York County District Attorney’s Office prepare for Strong’s trial, the department has temporarily ceased charging alleged clients in the prostitution investigation.

Order on pending motions.

Order concerning media coverage during trial.

And what about these prominent people? How come we don’t know who they are?

Why aren’t they charged along with the others less prominent?

Plea deals are a fraud; it gives power and a great deal of it to the prosecutor. It also by-passes the jury system. ONLY a jury can decide a case (see Constitution of the State of Maine).

The Portland Press Herald’s Freedom of Access requests are answered rather quickly.

FOIA – YORK COUNTY D.A., dated December 27, 2012, no response. A second request will be mailed out.

Favoratism? Protection? Selective?

Do we not find ourselves in a ‘David and Goliath’ scenario against a state with unlimited resources when we are maliciously and selectively prosecuted? When we battle the thefts of our homes/businesses/livelihoods? When parents battle the DHS in the theft of their children? The list goes on!

My concern since the beginning of this case was that we would we see a double standard of justice and selective prosecutions in this Kennebunk case where it concerns public officials/attorneys. Attorney Bergen and his cronies in the City of Biddeford, including Judge Christine Foster, are NOT above the law! This is NOT the first time he violates the law!

As this saga unfolds, the truth of our justice system will be revealed!

1.15.13

Attorney Dan Lilley filed a motion on Tuesday in York County Superior Court to postpone Strong’s trial for at least a month which had been scheduled to begin next week. Lilley’s motion asks for a postponement until Feb. 19 so that he has more time to prepare his defense. York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan opposes any delay.

Attorney Lilley filed a Motion to Withdraw. “This is all unfolding one week before Mark Strong’s trial is set to begin. The official motion to withdraw was filed at Cumberland County Court Tuesday. Lilley: The bottom line is the person with the most money shouldn’t prevail under our system.”
“The York County District Attorney’s office says it will wait until the motion hearing on Friday to make any comment. The judge could order that Lilley stay on the case at which point the trial will begin on Tuesday (January 22, 2013).”

Lilley states if he stays on the case he “will reveal well known people on the list of accused clients.”

Attorney Lilley filed a Motion to Withdraw because he hasn’t been paid. Judge Mills denied the motion to postpone the trial and another hand-delivered motion to change the trial venue. Mills asked Lilley to prepare a written motion on his request to withdraw from the case and Judge Mills agreed to hear the motion this Friday.

The lead prosecutor in the case, York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan, presented the judge with a preliminary list of 30 witnesses who have already been subpoenaed for the trial, and questionnaires have been prepared and sent to 250 potential jurors.

Is there a strategic plan in place here?

Why is Attorney Dan Lilley allowed to file motions in Cumberland County when the trial is taking place in York County?

Atty. Lilley filed a motion to postpone the trial. Judge Mills denied that motion, then he files a motion to withdraw because he hasn’t been paid.

Was money not an issue when he filed a motion to postpone?

Lilley states if he stays on the case he “will reveal well known people on the list of accused clients.” Is this a bargaining chip?

1.9.13

Kennebunk prostitution case featured in Vanity Fair. View article, click here.

 1.2.13

Justice Nancy Mills denied Strong’s motions to dismiss all charges and suppress evidence and his Request for a Franks hearing. Attorney “Lilley requested what is known as a Franks Hearing, in which he would argue that Kennebunk Police Officer Audra Presby’s written testimony is “reckless” and “misleading … to the court,” and filed an additional motion to throw out that evidence along with other related documents.”

View Order dated December 31, 2012.      

Strong’s trial to begin on Jan. 22. Wright’s trial is tentatively scheduled to begin in May.

Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen, Kennebunk and Dale Madore, North Yarmouth pleaded guilty through their attorneys, without appearing in York County Superior Court to face the misdemeanor charges. Bergen also sits on the Kennebunk Zoning Board of Appeals.

Justice Paul Fritzsche fined Bergen $600 plus $130 in fees and court costs, and fined Madore $1,000 plus $210 in fees and court costs.

Why are the fines and fees inconsistent? Why are Attorney Bergen’s fines/fees lower? Why is Judge Fritzsche issuing orders when the superior court judges recused themselves from this case?

“Strong is accused of conspiring with Alexis Wright to run a prostitution business. But the two are tied together in a lawsuit by the building’s landlord.”   Why won’t the media report on T&B Inc.’s ties between the City of Biddeford, Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen and his client and other attorneys, including the York County D.A.’s office?

View the 12.29.12 posted update. Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen is also involved in a conspiracy!

12.29.12

When you keep picking at the “scabs” they’re bound to bleed!

The media is at a near standstill in reporting updates on this case. “The number of alleged johns on the regular blotters has slowed to a trickle as many men suspected of engaging a prostitute have begun refusing to speak to investigators and are wheeling and dealing with the County Prosecutor’s office.” One wonders if the “deals” include keeping their names out of news range.

My concern since the beginning of this case was that we would we see a double standard of justice and selective prosecutions in this Kennebunk case. I maintained updates on this case to educate and inform the public, through my own personal experience, of misrepresentations and double talk by the media, double standards of justice and selective prosecutions. Is it happening? If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck…..

Zumba studio landlord sues alleged prostitute Alexis Wright, click here. “The landlord of the building where Alexis Wright ran her Zumba studio has filed a lawsuit against Wright, seeking $67,800 in damages. In the lawsuit, filed earlier this month, the owner of 8 York St., T&B Inc., says Wright and her business partner Mark Strong, who co-signed a March 2010 lease, breached that contract by not paying rent or property tax contributions. T&B Inc. says it is owed $67,800 in back rent and property taxes, as well as anticipated costs for the remainder of the five-year lease. In the complaint filed in York County Superior Court, T&B Inc., says it terminated Wright’s five-year lease on July 26, 2012. According to the terms of the lease, the company says Wright and Strong are now “liable for the entire unpaid rental and all other balances due for the remainder of the five year term.”

Who is and owns T&B Inc.? Why didn’t the media  say who the owner of the building is?  Well, here is the scoop on that.

The Maine Bureau of Corporations lists T&B Inc. Clerk/Agent as RALPH W. AUSTIN, P.O. BOX 468 BIDDEFORD, ME 04005 0468.

Department of Secretary of State.

RALPH W. AUSTIN – Woodman Edmands Danylik Austin Smith & Jacques, P.A., 234 Main Street – PO Box 468, Biddeford, Maine 04005-0468.

As owner of the building where ZUMBA classes, or horizontal mambo, took place, I find it hard to  believe that Atty.  Ralph Austin had no knowledge of the activity taking place in his building for the following reasons:

1)  One of the “clients” is a colleague of Atty. Austin – Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen, involved in the theft of Dorothy Lafortune’s home in concert with officials in the City of Biddeford and Biddeford District Court Judge Christine Foster.  As with both cases, Atty. Bergen knows, or should know, the law. He chose to commit a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as an attorney. He chose to represent the owner of a Maine Realty company and aid and abet the theft of my home and aided in the attempt to extort $35,000 from Lafortune.  Her persistence in pursuing this fraud against her led to the mysterious disappearance of the case file in Biddeford District Court. She was not afforded the opportunity, consideration and fairness in the reporting of her side of the story. She was not ensured a fair trial. She was maliciously prosecuted when (now former) D.A. Mark Lawrence had her evidence in hand and working with her. She lost her home, removed by a 13 member SWAT team, armed and masked, arrested and charged with criminal trespass upon her own property and thrown out into the street like a wild animal. She most certainly resents the fact that she paid the salaries of these official “scabs” to defraud and “rape” her.

See summary of Criminal Trespass charge.

2)  Attorney Dan Lilley claims that Kennebunk Police went after his client as “retaliation” for Strong investigating the department and for his getting too close to facts surrounding the Kennebunk Police department’s unprofessionalism.” Well, retaliation does happen as with the Lafortune case involving the theft of her home by Biddeford City officials Donna Dion and Jim Grattelo (former Mayors/councilor), Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen and his client, (former city solicitor) Atty. Harry B. Center, behind closed doors, and Police Chief Roger Beaupre. Was she getting too close to the facts? You bet!

When the media would not report on the official corruption occurring within the City of Biddeford Lafortune went public by producing and hosting her own public access tv talk show until Mayor Donna Dion and Councilor James Grattelo blacked-out” public access to everyone in order to keep her off the air. Biddeford, I’ll See You In Court.

First Amendment Case – click hereclick here.

Officials didn’t want her revealing the corruption within city hall, banks and the court system. Good excuse to steal her home! View the video of the SWAT Team ransacking of her home. They came in for her. Was the ransacking of her home necessary?

3)  A FOIA was sent to Atty. Keith Jacques, at the law firm of Woodman Edmands Danylik Austin Smith & Jacques, P.A.  Atty. Jacques is the counsel to the City of Biddeford. Requested was the City of Biddeford’s Court Order, accompanied by supporting documents which transferred Lafortune’s claim of right to title to her property to the City of Biddeford and to Tim Q. Ly. No court order exists. See FOIA and Response.

4)  Attorney Ralph W. Austin is in the same office as Biddeford City Attorney Keith Jacques. Additionally, attorney Harry B. Center has found his way back into Biddeford through this law firm. View FOIA to Harry B. Center. He did not respond.

Was there retaliation in the Dorothy Lafortune case? You bet!

Are the “prominent” individuals manipulating the situation?

Since the media will not report on this, you can bet the farm that I will! After this post let’s see how the mainstream media reacts. We haven’t heard much for weeks. 

Since I know the “players”, I’ve connected the dots to the theft of my property and my business property. Have you?

Will Maine’s Attorney General William Schneider (doesn’t have many days left in office) or returnable A.G. Janet Mills ready to resolve this mess?  Is the Maine Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety, John Morris, ready to cease covering the a$$ of the Attorney General?

So goes Maine……

Keep on picking! Keep on picking!

Twelfth man convicted in Wright case.

12.21.12

Today only one more name was added to the list of those charged with engaging a prostitute; a woman who’s husband has been previously charged.

The legal maneuvering continues.

“Police Lt. Anthony Bean Burpee says fewer names are being released because suspects are dealing directly with the prosecutor, eliminating the need for a police summons.”

Do you expect a double standard of justice and selective prosecutions?

Kennebunk Police Blotter.

Two more men charged in connection with the Kennebunk prostitution investigation have pleaded guilty.

Wright’s son will live with the father.

12.12.12

Judge Nancy Mills ruled today that Strong and Wright will be tried separately.

Strong’s attorney, Daniel Lilley argued in court Wednesday that the investigation of his client was flawed from the start and that the case should be dismissed.

York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan defends police searches in Zumba case.

Defendant Strong’s Motion to Dismiss For Discovery Violations; Motion to Suppress and Dismiss With Prejudice; Orders on State’s Motion to Reconsider, click here.

12.11.12

Two more men have been charged in the case. While the investigation continues, Lt. Tony Bean Burpee said many suspects have retained attorneys who plan to speak with Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan before making a decision on how to best proceed with their cases.

Suspects in the case are refusing to speak to police.

Are people using attorneys to manipulate the situation?

Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen, client on the list, had his case transferred to York County Superior Court.  Entry of Appearance of Attorney and Jury Trial Request.

Court shields Zumba instructor’s custody case from media scrutiny.

12.5.12

Biddeford District Court was the setting Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012, for the scheduled arraignments.

Judge Andre Janelle presided over the case.

“Only three men charged with engaging a prostitute in the case appeared in person Wednesday, with attorneys representing the other 18 filing letters with the court pleading not guilty on their respective clients’ behalf ” which included Attorney Jens Peter Bergen.  He did not appear in court. Atty. Bergen requested a jury trial and his case was transferred to the superior court.  DOCKET RECORD.

“Both Wright and Strong have pleaded not guilty to the charges. Cumberland County Superior Court Judge Nancy Mills has agreed to separate trials for the two, as requested by their respective attorneys, but prosecutors from the York County District Attorney’s Office have filed a motion asking Mills to reconsider her decision and rejoin the two cases.

On Tuesday, Justice Mills ordered prosecutors to provide evidence supporting that motion to the court and defense by Thursday.

That evidence, however, will be sealed from public view at the judge’s direction. The attorneys for the two defendants will have until Monday to inform her whether they will file any written opposition to the state’s evidence.

Strong’s attorney, Daniel Lilley of Portland, had successfully urged Justice Mills to separate the trials, arguing that his client wants a trial sooner than Wright does. He also contended that the charges against Wright are more serious and would make it difficult for Strong to get a fair trial.

If kept separate, Strong’s trial is scheduled to begin in January, while Wright’s is slated to begin in May.”

12.4.12

At least 20 of the alleged johns are due to appear in Biddeford District Court tomorrow, Wednesday, November 5th.  Of those charged is Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen.

If found guilty, each man faces a maximum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Attorneys for Wright and Strong are asking the court to keep their trials separate, while prosecutors from the York County District Attorney’s office have filed a motion to keep the cases joined. Cumberland County Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills has yet to rule on the prosecution’s motion.

Lawyers for nine of the 18 men have requested jury trials in York County Superior Court.

Attorney Jens-Peter Bergen is seeking a jury trial. As of November 30th, the only filing in the court relative to Atty. Bergen is this complaint.

“A superior court justice held a phone conference Tuesday with defense attorneys and prosecutors on whether to try Wright and Strong together at a joint trial or separately. Prosecutors have until Thursday to file more information supporting their argument that the pair be tried together. Defense attorneys then have until Dec. 10 to file a response.”

12.2.12

First alleged ‘johns’ to have day in court Wednesday.
Defense lawyers say they may also call suspected johns to the stand in the Kennebunk case.

Wright and Strong are currently due to be tried separately, but prosecutors have a motion pending to ask a judge to reconsider and try them jointly.

11.30.12

Involved in the theft of my home is one person on Kennebunk’s client list – Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen. As with both cases, Atty. Bergen knows, or should know, the law. He chose to commit a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as an attorney. In my case he chose to represent the owner of a Maine Realty company, in concert with others including District Court Judge Christine Foster, and aid and abet the theft of my home.

Complaint.

Bergen is scheduled to appear in court on December 5, 2012 at 1:00 p.m.

View update 11-10-12 for more info.

11.29.12

Prosecutors have appealed for a single trial.  “Although a judge decided this month to sever the prostitution cases against Alexis Wright and her alleged conspirator, Mark Strong Sr., attorneys are still arguing over whether the two should be tried together. Wright’s attorney filed an objection to counter the state’s continuing attempts to have Wright and Strong tried at the same time.”

Despite the legal maneuvering,  Attorney Sara Churchill said all parties are trying to resolve the disagreement.

11.26.12

Kennebunk police name 4 more alleged johns.

Updated “Johns” list released.

Police Lt. Tony Bean Burpee said the next bi-weekly police release will be issued on Friday, Dec. 7.

Evidence files given to Zumba teacher’s lawyer.

“Wright’s attorney, Sarah Churchill has until March 26 to file evidentiary motions. Churchill said she doesn’t know whether police were aware, when they began investigating the prostitution case, that they would unearth so much evidence. “It’s unusual for any case to have this much material associated with it,” she said. “Usually, the whole investigation is done before people get charged. But here, it has been this ongoing snowball-going-down-the-hill type of thing.”

“York County Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan declined to comment on the case.”

11.20.12

After the release of additional names on Friday, November 9, 2012 a local TV weatherman went public to say his name won’t be appearing on any upcoming list. He wanted to rebut rumors that have upset his family. He went to the station’s news director and told her, “I’d like to set the record straight.” He recorded an interview with one of the anchors of the 6 p.m. newscast, in which he told viewers that the rumors hurt more than just the person they target.”

What I am curious about is that Maureen O’Brien, WCSH-TV’s channel 6 news director, left the station for unspecified reasons 6 days after the station’s longtime weather forecaster went on the air to rebut rumors that he is among the suspected clients of an alleged prostitution operation in Kennebunk. Steve Carter, the station’s president and general manager, would not comment Tuesday on O’Brien’s departure. He would not say why or when she left the position. She “became the station’s news director in September 2008, after working as managing editor for WCSH for five years” which means that she was editor in 2003 when the media did not afford me the opportunity “to set the record straight” in the theft of my home by City of Biddeford officials, in concert with Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen, a client on “the list.”  As I’ve said previously, I can sympathize and relate to this person’s concerns and wanting to set the record straight. However, he works at a tv station and has access to a venue to set his record straight, unlike those of us who have been demonized and humiliated by the mainstream media.

“Four men plead guilty in Kennebunk prostitution case. Meanwhile Justice Nancy Mills agrees Alexis Wright and Mark Strong Sr. should not be tried together.”

“None of the men, the first to be convicted in the case, appeared in court; all four were fined. The lawyers for the four men filed appearances in York County Superior Court for their clients and entered guilty pleas on their behalf, court records show.”

The “list” includes many in construction. The trades include realtors, appraisers and real estate attorneys.

The 58 men charged so far include some business professionals likely to have disposable income, such as the president of a savings trust company, a trustee of a local country club, the CEO of a Portland information technology firm, and a senior vice president of capital markets for a Boston-based investment company who is also a financial adviser for the town of Scarborough. 

A motion was filed on Nov. 6 by a lawyer representing the Portland Press Herald to unseal two affidavits filed by police. Judge Christine Foster’s ruling in Biddeford District Court upheld her order to seal those affidavits and rejected the motion to make them public. Cliff Schechtman, executive editor of the Press Herald, said he is considering filing an appeal of the judge’s ruling. “Why should these documents be secret? Who or what is being protected?” Schechtman said. “Transparency is vital for the public’s confidence in the legal system.”

Wright’s attorney, Sarah Churchill, said she doesn’t know why the state wants those two affidavits sealed. “It’s a bit unusual,” she said. “Typically, after charges are brought, those affidavits are unsealed.”

“Prosecutors in the case are asking Cumberland County Superior Court Judge Nancy Mills to reconsider her ruling to allow separate trials for Wright and Strong, which attorneys for both individuals had requested.”

“The York County District Attorney’s Office, which is prosecuting the case, has argued in a court filing that a combined trial for both Wright and Strong would not deprive either of speedy trials, as Strong’s attorney argued in his request for the split, and that nearly all charges against the two individuals are interrelated.”

“Mills has yet to rule on the prosecution’s motion. Under the current schedule, Strong would go on trial in January, while Wright would go on trial in May.”

Another concern is selective prosecution. Of the 21 alleged clients who have been charged, one is Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen. As an attorney he knows, or should know, the law. He chose to commit a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as an attorney. This is not the only time Atty. Bergen chose to violate the law. He chose to represent the owner of a Maine Realty company, in concert with others including District Court Judge Christine Foster, and aid and abet the theft of my home.  See update 10.21.12.  His client’s attempt to extort $35,ooo (order issued by Judge Foster) gives reason for concern where Judge Foster is involved in his fate. My persistence in pursuing this fraud against me led to the mysterious disappearance of the case file in Biddeford District Court.

Will the court apply the same standard of justice to Atty. Bergen as given to those of us who were charged (unlawfully and maliciously) with criminal trespass upon our own property?

11.13.12
4 more names added to client list.
Four men pleaded guilty to the charge of engaging a prostitute in the Kennebunk prostitution case earlier this month, and did not have their names appear on the public list of alleged johns released by the Police Department. The men went to court and accepted a plea in the case, paying fines.”

Justice Nancy Mills agreed in a ruling issued Friday that Alexis Wright and Mark Strong  will have separate trials.  The prosecution had asked in October for the trials to be joined, arguing that the defendants are alleged to have participated in the same act or transaction or in the same series of acts or transactions connected to the alleged operation of a prostitution business.  Strong’s case is on the January trial list for York County. “Wright’s trial has been scheduled for May, although it could be earlier if she does not file any motions.”

11.10.12

“Daniel Lilley, Mark Strong’s attorney, is calling for the police officer investigating his client to step down from the case because she was once accused of sexual contact and abuse of a minor. In his letter, sent via e-mail to Al Searles, the chairman of the Kennebunk Board of Selectmen as well as members of the media, Lilley said, “this is the kind of information” his client Mark Strong was investigating when he was “singularly and suddenly charged with promoting prostitution.”

“In his letter, Lilley claims that Kennebunk Police went after his client as “retaliation” for Strong investigating the department and for his getting too close to facts surrounding the Kennebunk Police department’s unprofessionalism.”

“In a release issued in response to Lilley’s letter, the Kennebunk Police Department said “all matters identified in the attorney’s letter were properly and timely referred to the Maine State Police and the Maine DHHS for investigation, and no wrong doing by anyone associated with the Kennebunk Police Department was found.” “This hypocrisy and selective and retaliatory law enforcement must stop,” says attorney Lilly.

“Strong said his arrest and the police confiscation of his home computers were done in “retaliation” for his investigation.”

Attorney Daniel Lilley accuses D.A. Slattery’s office of mishandling the case, citing its failure to provide him with evidence.

Slattery has been a prosecutor for more than two decades, and has been district attorney since 2010. She succeeded Mark Lawrence, who held the office for eight years.

Most lawyers said it’s unlikely that any men will take their cases to trial and risk additional scrutiny, although some may want to try to clear their names.

Jim Burke, a University of Maine School of Law professor says “One of the problems that the state may have with Justice Mills is she may want to move the case along quickly, and if they’re not ready to move, it may be dismissed.”

New list of 15 men charged in Kennebunk case includes South Portland pastor.

Client list.

On 11-9-12 motions were filed asking for separate trials.

MOTIONS:

STATE V. WRIGHT – MOTION TO SEVER

STATE V. WRIGHT & STRONG – STRONG’S OBJ. TO STATE’S NOTICE OF JOINDER

As the third list of alleged “johns” was released a television weatherman went public to say that his name won’t be on any upcoming list, wanted to rebut rumors that have upset his family and “set the record straight.” He was given the opportunity for a recorded interview with the station’s news director in which he told viewers that the rumors hurt more than just the person they target.

I can sympathize and relate to this person’s concerns and wanting to set the record straight. However, he works at a tv station and has access to a venue to set his record straight, unlike those of us who have been demonized and humiliated by the mainstream media.

My reason for maintaining updates on this case is to educate and inform the public, through my own personal experience, of misrepresentations and double talk by the media, double standards of justice and selective prosecutions. Will this happen? “One of the problems that the state may have with Justice Mills is she may want to move the case along quickly, and if they’re not ready to move, it may be dismissed.”  Dismissed?

Attorney Dan Lilley claims that Kennebunk Police went after his client as “retaliation” for Strong investigating the department and for his getting too close to facts surrounding the Kennebunk Police department’s unprofessionalism.” Well, retaliation does happen as with my case involving the theft of my home by Biddeford City officials Donna Dion and Jim Grattelo (former Mayors/councilor) behind closed doors and Police Chief Roger Beaupre. Was I getting too close to the facts? You bet!

I learned that there is an unwritten rule in Chief Beaupre’s Department. That rule “none of his police officers are to speak with me.” Why’s that? They might learn a little about the law, their constitutional duties or maybe a secret about their own chief.

When the media would not report on the official corruption occurring within the City of Biddeford I went public by producing and hosting my own public access tv talk show until Mayor Donna Dion and Councilor James Grattelo “blacked-out” public access to everyone in order to keep me off the air. Biddeford, I’ll See You In Court.

First Amendment Case – click here, click here.

Biddeford Public Access Policy is that one must be a ‘resident’ in order to use the public access tv station. Well, officials didn’t want me revealing the corruption within city hall, banks and the court system. Good excuse to steal my home! View the video of the SWAT Team ransacking of my home. They came in for me. Was the ransacking of my home necessary?

Involved in the theft of my home is one person on Kennebunk’s client list – Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen. As with both cases, Atty. Bergen knows, or should know, the law. He chose to commit a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as an attorney. In my case he chose to represent the owner of a Maine Realty company, in concert with others including District Court Judge Christine Foster, and aid and abet the theft of my home.

D.A. Slattery, who succeeded Mark Lawrence (the DA who maliciously prosecuted me for criminal trespass upon my own property, was working with me and had my evidence in his hand) is accused by Atty. Dan Lilly of mishandling his case. What about the ‘mishandling’ of my case(s)?

When I ran for public office in 2004 (a special election – I believe I won that election -political and unlawful maneuvers were initiated by Maine legislators and Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre who arrested my campaign members on trumped up charges. Yet Maine’s Secretary of State and Attorney General’s Offices covered up election law violations, as well as a federal offense of tampering with first class mail.

Retaliation? You bet! Where was the media? They wouldn’t touch it.

Why won’t the media give me(us) the same consideration and fairness and report on my (our) side of the story? How about allowing us to “set the record straight” and clear our good names and reputations?

Will we see a double standard of justice and selective prosecutions in this Kennebunk case?

11.2.12

Court documents unsealed in the Kennebunk prostitution case.

News 8’s Meghan Torjussen reports. View video.

State of Maine v. Alexis Wright – October 29, 2012: State’s Report on Taxation Discovery

State of Maine v. Mark Strong – October 29, 2012: State’s Report on Taxation Discovery

10.27.12

Strong’s attorney, Daniel Lilley of Portland, filed a motion with Justice Nancy Mills asking for dismissal. Deputy District Attorney Justina McGettigan filed a response Thursday in opposition to Lilley’s request.

10.26.12

The Kennebunk Police Department on Friday afternoon released the names of 18 additional men charged.

Among those announced Friday as having been charged as an alleged client in the prostitution case was Portland lawyer and former Portland Planning Board chairman Joe Lewis.

Second “Johns” List.

Important Non-Confidential Filings

The complaint for a temporary restraining order was an attempt to avoid a media circus. The complaint was based on constitutional principles of privacy, and the tremendous harm that would occur by the mere mention of people’s names in connection with this case.

Where was the concern for my right to privacy? Why won’t the media report on the crimes and official corruption in this case? There is more to Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen (on the list) than meets the eye. View the video of the SWAT Team ransacking of my home. They came in for me. Was the ransacking of my home necessary? I did recognize the eyes of one of the armed and masked SWAT team – Biddeford Police officer Rick Doyon, a young officer who didn’t know what the 4th Amendment is!

10.21.12

Will we have double talk, double standard of justice and selective prosecutions? Will media reporting be accurate?

York County Superior Court judges recused themselves from the case as there were concerns that York County judges may know some of the witnesses. If there were concerns about York County judges, why assign Judge Joyce Wheeler? She sat in the courts in York County.

Judge Andre Janelle wrote “it is the role of the judiciary to protect the rights of each individual appearing in court and to take measures to insure that a criminal defendant obtains a fair trial.” Why have the courts not been as considerate to others whose rights have been totally violated in Maine courts? Why have others been denied fair trials?

Defense attorneys tried to prevent the public release of the “client list” as the release of names could be damaging to their clients, has “the ability to infect the jury pool, to prejudice people, and to deny them the right to due process and a fair trial.” Why the double standard? Many of us who have been “charged” (with trumped up charges and maliciously prosecuted) have had our names plastered all over the media and irreparably harmed. Why wouldn’t the media report our side of the story?

York County D.A. Kathryn Slattery wants “to ensure the defendants have a fair trial.” That hasn’t been the norm in the York County D.A.’s office. This has an air of “selective” prosecutions.

Of the 21 alleged clients who have been charged, one is Atty. Jens-Peter Bergen. As an attorney he knows, or should know, the law. He chose to commit a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as an attorney. This is not the only time Atty. Bergen chose to violate the law. He chose to represent the owner of a Maine Realty company, in concert with others including District Court Judge Christine Foster, and aid and abet the theft of my home. Why wouldn’t the media give me the same consideration and fairness and report on my side of the story? Why was I not ensured a fair trial? Why was I maliciously prosecuted when (now former) D.A. Mark Lawrence had my evidence in hand and working with me?

There are many people who have suffered at the hands of official corruption in this state, yet the media will not report our sides of our stories. Sticking your head in the sand will not stop the corruption. Your head in the sand is the “miracle grow” that allows corruption to flourish.

Will the media give us the same opportunity to tell our stories?

10.19.12

A York County grand jury has indicted a Thomaston businessman and a Zumba instructor on numerous counts in connection with an alleged prostitution operation in Kennebunk.

York County Superior Court judges recused themselves from the case as there were concerns that York County judges may know some of the witnesses.  Superior Court Chief Justice Thomas Humphrey specially assigned Justice Joyce Wheeler to the high-profile York County case. The lawyer for the Thomaston businessman argued that the case should be dismissed and that Judge Wheeler should recuse herself.  The problem, according to Attorney Dan Lilley, is that Wheeler’s law clerk, Jonathan Nathans, is married to Assistant Attorney General Kate Lawrence  who is part of the prosecution. Judge Wheeler refused to dismiss the charge and denied a request by both the defense attorney and prosecutor that she recuse herself from the case.  Both the defense attorney and prosecutor stressed that they were not questioning Wheeler’s integrity but that they didn’t want there to be any appearance of bias in the case. In his motion to have the case against his client dismissed, Atty. Lilley argued that the failure of the state to provide him evidence it has collected against his client has made it impossible to prepare for trial and his  client “is getting killed in the media.”

One week into the case, Judge Joyce Wheeler recused herself, although it’s not clear why she changed her mind. “A judge does not have to give a reason why and she did not give a reason why,” Mary Ann Lynch, a spokeswoman for the state court system. Wheeler’s order “essentially says she has a reason for bowing out of the case other than the marital relationship between the law clerk and the prosecutor. ”  According to Lynch, she did not know why Wheeler had done so.  Lilley said he was surprised by Wheeler’s order. “This is all out of the clear blue,” said Lilley.“Why she’s doing it, I guess we’re not going to know. Judges can do what they want, pretty much.”

Superior Court Chief Justice Thomas Humphrey assigned Justice Nancy Mills to the high-profile case. Mills normally sits in Cumberland and Kennebec counties.

A motion was filed by the Maine attorney general’s office seeking to prevent the public release of the “client list.” The Attorney General’s Office took the position that the list should be part of the evidence covered by a protective order, which would restrict its release to only the defense and prosecution. “The state seeks to be respectful of the constitutional rights of persons before they are charged, as well as those who will not be charged,” Assistant Attorney General Gregg D.Bernstein states in his motion.

On Tuesday, October 9, 2012 the two charged, thus far, pleaded not guilty to a slew of charges tied to the alleged prostitution during their arraignments which took place in Cumberland County Superior Court, Portland. “Atty. Daniel Lilley told Mills during the hearing in Cumberland County Superior Court that a “mish-mash” of documents piled into boxes, as well as a computer hard drive, had been delivered to his office as evidence against his client by prosecutors. But he said he and his associates have struggled to correlate the documents in the boxes with an accompanying index, and have further been unable to access the videos, photographs and other incriminating evidence prosecutors allege are on the hard drive. Lilley based a motion to dismiss the charges against his client on what he described as the state’s inability to comply with the court’s demand to turn over its evidence against his client.” “While District Attorney Justina McGettigan, representing the state in court Tuesday, disagreed that the evidence so far turned over has been disorganized, she acknowledged that prosecutors are withholding some evidence, including a computer in which she said investigators found “markers” indicating the presence of child pornography.”

The case has drawn national attention and is being watched closely in southern Maine, largely because the records that the Zumba instructor allegedly kept on her prostitution clients include more than 150 people, including prominent figures. The list of clients had not been made public at this point, but police have started issuing court summonses to the suspected “johns.”

York County District Attorney Kathryn Slattery issued a rare press release saying her office would not comment on any pending matter, in accordance with state bar rules. “We want to ensure these defendants have a fair trial, which is in everyone’s interest,” Slattery said in the release. “For now, as District Attorney, I am confident that when all the facts are made public, the evidence will speak for itself and the community will possess a full understanding of what happened.”

One day before police were expected to release the names of people charged with soliciting prostitution, Atty. Stephen Schwartz filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to prevent the state or any of its agents from releasing the names of anyone charged as clients or included on “client list.” Schwartz said that the release of the names could be damaging to his clients. “It has the ability to infect the jury pool, to prejudice people, to deny them the right to due process and a fair trial,” he said. “Furthermore, it marks them with a scarlet letter in the community and it appeals to the most prurient interests of people who want to see the list.” Schwartz said the release of the names has a great potential to ruin people’s reputations, families and businesses.

Townspeople have said they’ve heard that lawyers, doctors, law enforcement officials, a television personality and other well-known people in town are included in a detailed clientele list police found.

On Friday, October 12, 2012 it was reported that “a state judge declined to block the release of names of men accused of giving business to a fitness instructor charged with running a prostitution operation out of her Zumba fitness studio.” Based on that information, Kennebunk police began issuing summonses to the” johns” on misdemeanor charges of engaging a prostitute. The first batch of names were to be released Friday in police activity reports that are made public every other week, said Lt. Anthony Burpee.

But a lawyer for two of the men believed to be on the list asked a judge on Thursday to issue a preliminary injunction preventing the release of the names. District Judge Andre Janelle quickly rejected the motion for a restraining order and a preliminary injunction to stop the release of names. The three-page order was signed by the judge and filed Friday in Biddeford District Court.

“While it is the role of the judiciary to protect the rights of each individual appearing in court and to take measures to insure that a criminal defendant obtains a fair trial, the judiciary’s role in protecting a defendant’s rights does not extend to shielding the identity of an adult criminal defendant who has been charged by criminal complaint and summoned to appear in court,” Janelle wrote.

Schwartz asked Janelle to stay his order while he appeals to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. He also filed a suit against Maine State Police Chief Robert Williams, Kennebunk Police Chief Robert Mackenzie, York County District Attorney Kathryn Slattery and state Attorney General William Schneider.

Stephen Schwartz said his appeal to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court represents the last best hope for his two clients to prevent the names from becoming public.

“We think there’s a really important principle at stake here: These people are presumed innocent. Once these names are released, they’re all going to have the mark of a scarlet letter, if you will.” Schwartz says his clients would suffer irreparable harm personally and professionally.

The Editor of the York County Coast Star decided the paper will publish the names of those charged in Kennebunk prostitution case as the police blotters are a matter of public record. “For the paper, which regularly runs police blotters, there is a legal issue if we choose not to run them, as well as a question of fairness: what makes it OK to print the name of someone charged with OUI but not with engaging a prostitute? At the Star, we didn’t come to the decision to print the names of those charged lightly. We understand there are many in the community who would prefer we not print the names at all, out of respect for the family members and friends of those involved. As we’ve heard rumors and fielded some angry questions in recent days about our decision to publish the names, we wanted to address some of those concerns directly.”

The Coast Star, along with the Portland Press Herald, filed an objection with the court over all the records being sealed, indefinitely, in this case. Justice Nancy Mills herself said that transparency in the court system trumps the need to keep sealed many of the records in this case.

The Star believes that printing the names of those charged with engaging a prostitute is the fair thing to do to help set the record straight and put to rest the ugly rumors that continue to circulate throughout town.

There are people in this community who have had their names dragged through the mud for months because people believe they are on the list. Many, if not all of those people, all of them men, may not even be on the list of alleged clients. How will innocent people clear their names if those who are charged with crimes are kept secret? Do they spend their lives living under a cloud of suspicion at the cost of protecting those who allegedly committed a crime?

The legal maneuvering in attempts to stall the possible release of the first batch of suspected clients’ names and the last-minute desperate attempts to persuade judges to block the public release of “the list” has only heightened the curiosity of town residents who have heard that the list of could include lawyers, law enforcement officers and some well-known people. Along with these delays, the Kennebunk Police Department decided not release the names of people charged with being clients of an alleged Kennebunk prostitution operation until the state high court decided on an appeal. However the appeal was withdrawn and a  new complaint in Superior Court where Superior Court Justice Thomas Warren denied a motion for a temporary restraining order filed by the attorney for two of the alleged “johns” to prevent police and prosecutors from releasing the names of those issued summonses for engaging a prostitute. Warren disagreed that a temporary restraining order would not adversely affect the public interest, as the lawyer for the two plaintiffs had argued. “The principle that court proceedings are public is essential to public confidence,” Warren wrote. “If persons charged with crimes could withhold their identities, the public would not be able to monitor proceedings or observe whether justice has been done and to observe whether certain defendants may have received favored treatment.”

A list of 21 names of suspected “johns” was released by the Kennebunk Police Department, but the names have no addresses or ages. This has caused much confusion and anger. Without addresses or ages the identities of the men can’t be determined for sure, and at least one local man, whose name is the same as a man on the list, is furious.

Superior Court Justice Thomas Warren’s order releasing names alone compounded the harm in this prostitution case. “In his attempt to give victims a little bit of cover, he has exposed everyone in the state with a similar name to some heavy scrutiny. If Warren had at least released the names, ages and hometowns of the summonsed men, innocent ones would be protected from undeserved embarrassment.”

The Kennebunk Police Department released the names with the middle initials of 21 men who were issued summonses in the wide-ranging prostitution case.

Three police detectives are working full time going through the evidence seized in the investigation of an alleged prostitution business, with the probe expected to continue for a few more months. Lt. Anthony Bean Burpee of the Kennebunk Police Department said he does not know how many people will end up being charged with engaging a prostitute as a result of the investigation. The 21 names have been issued summonses. At least one defense attorney has stated that 150-200 johns might be involved in the case, but Bean Burpee said he does not know how many are being investigated or how many might end up being charged.

Of the 21 alleged clients who have been charged, one is a lawyer from Kennebunk — 54-year-old Jens W. Bergen, according to Kennebunk police.

Jacqueline Rogers, executive director of the Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar, said Wednesday that there are bar rules that attorneys must adhere to or face possible disciplinary action. She said that no action would be contemplated against any attorney unless that person was convicted. Lawyers in Maine must register each year and are required to inform the Board if they have been convicted of a crime. She said some attorneys self report when there have been convictions and sometimes the court will inform the Board. She said any action against an attorney would depend on a conviction. Rogers said she cannot recall the Board having to deal before with any attorney convicted of engaging a prostitute. The Board assists the Maine Supreme Judicial Court in handling complaints against attorneys.

Rogers also pointed out that the Maine rules of professional conduct state that a lawyer could be disciplined for misconduct for committing “a criminal or unlawful act that reflects adversely on the lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects.”

Kennebunk Police spokesman Lt. Anthony Bean Burpee said the agency would include future names of people issued summonses in the case in the regular bi-weekly press releases that the agency sends out. The next release is expected to be sent out Friday, Oct. 26.

Related:

Summonses are being prepared for more than 150 people, including prominent figures

Kennebunk residents ready to see ‘the list’, then turn the page

Records reveal details of alleged Kennebunk prostitution ring 

Theft charges carry harshest penalties in Kennebunk prostitution case

2 charged in Kennebunk prostitution case plead not guilty

Prosecutor: Child porn may be on suspect’s hard drive

Release of ‘the list’ on hold for now

Maine town’s agony prolonged in prostitution case

Experts weigh in on publishing ‘the list’

Kennebunk residents, business owners try to distance themselves from alleged prostitution

List of 21 men charged by Kennebunk police in prostitution case

Judge reverses decision, allows release of more info on alleged  johns

************************

This blog will be updated as the case unfolds. Check back often.

 

THE MAINE FORUM – FIRST AMENDMENT CASE (Part 2)

This is a continuation of The Maine Forum First Amendment Case article where the MCLU filed a complaint against the city of Biddeford for violation of my right to freedom of speech by pulling “What Price Justice” from the air.
See amendment complaint here.

This case ties into the theft of my home (under the guise of a “foreclosure”) by the City of Biddeford officials’ “behind closed doors” tactics in concert with Tim Q. Ly, York County DA Mark Lawerence and Judge Arthur Brennan, my forced removal from my home by an armed and masked 13 member swat team and unlawful arrest of criminal trespass upon my own property. (For more info, see the categories “City of Biddeford”, “G. Arthur Brennan” and “Christine Foster”).

Then former mayor Donna Dion and then councilor James Gratello (prior Mayor) were successful in removing me from Biddeford public access in which I produced and hosted a talk show, The Maine Forum. This initiated the first amendment case. I continued my program until spring of 2002 when city officials “blacked out” public access to all producers.

This First Amendment Case was filed in October, 2001. During the course of these proceedings, on summary judgment motions the magistrate judge’s recommended decision partially favored me and partially favored the defendants. Both sides objected to the recommended decision. US District Court Judge Brock Hornby “issued an Order to Show Cause why he should not dismiss my lawsuit as moot, or stay further proceedings until Biddeford determined how it would administer the channel in the future. After receiving responses from the parties, he did not dismiss the case. Instead, he stayed all action and required the parties to report every 60 days on what Biddeford was doing. In August , Biddeford reported that it was actively considering the issue and would probably reach a City Council decision in September. In October, the City explained that the untimely death of the Public Access Director had delayed matters and that recommendations should be submitted to the City Council later that same month. During this period, Biddeford had reopened the public access channel to broadcast meetings of the council, school committee and planning and zoning boards, but still allowed no access to private producers. Biddeford failed to give any explanation of further inaction and that a stay was no longer justified.” Biddeford asked the court to dismiss the case as moot.

On December 18, 2002 Judge Hornby dismissed the case as “moot” stating “now that there is no such access, any relief I might grant concerning that defunct process would be meaningless.”  Judge Hornby did “have a nagging concern whether Biddeford was dealing with this lawsuit in good faith.”  After this decision, Biddeford did open public access to all producers after a nearly two year “blackout.” However, Donna Dion and James Gratello were not finished with me. I had caught them at their game, in concert with bankers, attorneys and judges. Next would come the “taking” of my home “behind closed doors.” More on that to come.

On January 16, 2003 I filed an appeal to the First Circuit Court of Appeals, pro se.
See appeal.

The order of the district court dismissing the case was vacated and the matter remanded for further proceedings.
First Circuit Court of Appeals order.

JUDGMENT Entered: May 26,2004 – Mandate, click here.

The Maine U.S. District Court did not hold further proceedings.

To note, Harry B. Center, Attorney for the City of Biddeford, left his position. I learned, not to long ago, Atty. Center found his way back to Biddeford and is partnered with the law firm of Woodman Edmands Danylik Austin Smith & Jacques, P.A.

“The loss of First Amendment freedoms for even minimal period of time unquestionably constitutes irreparable injury”: Elrod v. Burns, 427 US 347, 373, 96 S.Ct. 2673 (1976).

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