A state police major being sued over a rewritten report on the arrest of a Dudley judge’s daughter denies that the order for a trooper to revise the report originated from Secretary of Public Safety and Security Daniel Bennett.
Maj. Susan Anderson’s denials are contained in her written answers to a lawsuit filed Nov. 7 by Trooper Ryan Sceviour.
“The Defendant denies the allegations,” Needham lawyer Timothy M. Burke wrote on Maj. Anderson’s behalf, among her answers, dated Dec. 22 and filed in federal court in Boston.
Trooper Sceviour filed a lawsuit against Maj. Anderson and Col. Richard McKeon, the former commander of the state police.
The revised arrest report excluded information contained in the original that said Alli Bibaud – who was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of narcotics, driving under the influence of liquor and negligent driving after a car crash on Interstate 290 on Oct. 16 – had said she engaged in sexual acts to procure heroin and offered the trooper sex in exchange for leniency.
Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr., who is not named in the lawsuit, has said his office agreed with a defense attorney’s motion to impound the Bibaud police report, when it was first presented in court Oct. 17. His office also filed a successful motion to redact sections of the original, impounded police report three days later.
The DA’s redactions, according to the Sceviour lawsuit, comported with what Maj. Anderson – and her superiors – wanted changed.
Maj. Anderson’s answers to the complaint confirm that.
The Sceviour complaint states: “The redactions made in the original report are similar to the items that Trooper Sceviour was ordered to remove from his report.”
“The Defendant admits to the substance of the allegations contained in this paragraph of the Plaintiff’s Complaint,” Maj. Anderson’s answer said.
Despite the stir involving creation of a revised police report – done on Oct. 19, two days after the original was filed at Central District Court in Worcester – the report was not used to prosecute Ms. Bibaud, whose father, Timothy Bibaud, is first justice at Dudley District Court.
Ms. Bibaud, 30, of Worcester, pleaded guilty last month to reckless driving and drunken driving. She was sentenced to 14 months’ probation.
The major’s answers do not explain why there was a lapse between when the Bibaud police report was filed in court and the actions taken to alter it.
According to Maj. Anderson, corrective action against Trooper Sceviour was warranted, for writing a report containing “negative and derogatory statements” that “were not elements of the crime.”
Her answers to the complaint acknowledge that Col. McKeon, superintendent of the state police at the time, ordered the corrective action. Col. McKeon announced his retirement in early November, in the wake of controversy concerning the handling of the Bibaud report.
After the state police commander resigned, Gov. Charles D. Baker Jr. weighed in, saying the trooper did nothing wrong, and that the police report was fine, and that negative material in the trooper’s personnel file would be expunged.
“Everything that was there belonged in the report,” the governor said during an interview with WBZ on Nov. 19.
Trooper Sceviour and Sgt. Jason Conant, who approved the original police report, received “corrective action” paperwork for including or allowing “derogatory and negative statements” in the arrest report that “are not part of probable cause or elements of the crimes for which the defendant is being charged.” The trooper was were told not to put “inappropriate commentary” in future reports.
The Sceviour complaint, filed by Boston attorney Leonard Kesten, alleges:
“The arrest report written by Trooper Sceviour was consistent with his duties and complied with the highest standards of the State Police and the ethical responsibilities entrusted to him by the citizens of the Commonwealth.”
Maj. Anderson’s answer to that allegation is as follows: “The Defendant is without sufficient personal knowledge to respond to this paragraph of the Plaintiff’s Complaint.”
Trooper Ali Rei, who assisted in the Bibaud arrest, also filed a lawsuit in federal court in Boston against Maj. Anderson and Col. McKeon – three days after Trooper Sceviour’s lawsuit. Both complaints allege that the major and the former colonel ordered them to alter or destroy court records, which is a felony.
Maj. Anderson’s answers to the Rei complaint were due Dec. 25, but the court granted the defendant an extension.
The Anderson motion seeking the extension said she “intends on filing a Motion to Dismiss all claims alleged against her.”
Concern over whether rules and laws were breached involving the Bibaud matter prompted the new state police commander, Col. Kerry Gilpin, to hire an outside consultant, at a cost of $30,000, to investigate.
Attorney General Maura Healey’s office has been reviewing the matter to determine whether any criminal conduct may have transpired.
The state Ethics Commission is also investigating.
One of the answers to the Sceviour complaint rejects the allegation that the trooper was forced to write a new police report or face potential discharge from the force when he allegedly insisted on affixing the word “REVISED” on the new Bibard report.
The allegation said: “Trooper Sceviour told Major Anderson that he wanted to note in his report that he had revised it because of an order by his supervisors.”
Major Anderson’s answer said: “The Defendant denies the allegations contained in Paragraph 75 that Plaintiff wanted the report to be marked as ‘Revised.’ Defendant informed Plaintiff that she had previously been instructed to mark his edited report as ‘Revised.'”
Her answer did not say who instructed her to do so.