Save Our State of Massachusetts
oh the irony: “What we found as we investigated was that we shouldn’t wait,” L’Esperance said. “We had to make arrests and pick off the people who were transporting drugs into this community and those selling them here. As we got tips from people in the community of suspicious activities in their neighborhood, we had to act”.
The Moral of the story is CRIME PAYS, especially for this individual whose duty was to “enforce” the law. Those in the private sector would be locked up, and have been, for far less, even by L’Esperance himself, who, among many other atrocities, committed “assault and battery of handcuffed arrestees” (@ 8:22) and many more horrors against citizens he was sworn to “serve and protect”.
To date, L’Esperance faces only the charges brought against him by Salisbury Police for crimes committed while he was Chief of Police there. [L’Esperance probe under way] No investigation has been undertaken relative to the many improprieties he is believed to have perpetuated against the public, and through the courts in his 20 plus years of serving on the police force in West Newbury which included working for the drug task force, as well as being the court liaison for West Newbury in Newburyport District Court where he could determine who and what did or did not get prosecuted, and influenced many outcomes.
Read more to learn how corruption embeds itself, is nurtured, and thrives, right in your own backyards, while public officials do nothing to stop it.
Salisbury Police complained of L’Esperance’s corruption and reign of terror for 4 years with nobody listening to them. Before that, Kristi Devine went to the Selectmen, DOJ, DA, AG, FBI, State Rep, and more while no one listened. It took out of state police to blow the whistle on him, yet he is still free to commit crimes when he is a known threat to the public, and he practices LAW.
If anything can attest to the critical and vital importance of Selectmen in overseeing the integrity of their police department, and holding people accountable, it is the conduct of David L’Esperance, a police officer in West Newbury for 20 years before rising to the level of Chief two towns over. Devine, and others, complained to Selectmen, for the last 11 years, (since 2000 when the Devines moved to West Newbury), and literally begged for an investigation into the goings on at the West Newbury Police Department – – – to no avail. [Selectmen deny Devine’s bid for independent police probe September 9, 2011]
Real News pp 1&2 Even after a stay-at-home mom (Devine), was falsely arrested, (3 times), incarcerated in prison, and exiled from her home and family, all orchestrated by L’Esperance with the knowing support and assistance of then Chief Dennis, and current Chief Holmes; no one raised an eyebrow.
In January of 2006, L’Esperance was promoted to Sergeant while Devine’s trial for the almost dozen false charges that led to her false arrests, imprisonment, and exile was scheduled for the 31st of that month. On the 31st, ALL charges were DISMISSED. Yet no one, most especially Selectmen who were consistently apprised of the situation, ever bothered to ponder, question, or investigate how this could happen to a stay-at-home mom who had pleaded for their intervention. http://www.newburyportnews.com/opinion/x962029634/Woman-was-courageous-to-tell-her-story
West Newbury Selectmen still ignore the crimes committed by L’Esperance under their watch, and pretend this ‘new’ evidence has no bearing on what they allowed to go on in their town for 2 decades. In fact, Selectmen Knowles and Cushing aren’t even ashamed when they disclose that they have not read the Administrative Investigation on Chief David L’Esperance, January 24, 2011. It is inconceivable that West Newbury Selectmen accept the premise that no one in their town, most especially L’Esperance’s supervisors witnessed his criminal behavior. This becomes all the more ludicrous when Salisbury officers claim L’Esperance did not know the how, when, or why to make legal arrests, and screams of their reckless disregard and concern for the rights and safety of their citizens. It does, however, attest to why nothing has changed in West Newbury.
L’Esperance could only become what he is today through the support, even empowerment of and by Selectmen who stood behind, and/or ignored, blatant incompetence, deceit, and worse during Chief Dennis’ (L’Esperance’s mentor) watch. [L’Esperance, critic trade complaints December 28, 2011] That the current Chief, who replaced Dennis, was at all times L’Esperance’s supervisor and has not come forward with anything that indicates she ever saw or knew of the criminal activities L’Esperance engaged in under her supervision, and in some cases, with her participation, is the basis for how this sort of depraved corruption, and indifference embeds itself, festers, spreads to other communities, and continues the status quo in West Newbury as though no one is the wiser. Perhaps officials are not the wiser, but the more likely scenario is that they just don’t care, as More charges against ex-chief December 24, 2011 come out almost a year after L’Esperance was stripped of his badge and gun, and still the investigation only focuses on what he did in Salisbury.
This lack of accountability and vigilance is how corruption continues, uninterrupted. It can and will go on everywhere until something changes, or is done to root it out, and stop it from becoming firmly rooted and entrenched. That L’Esperance’s ascent was possible in but one, little, rural town that most people have never heard of is astounding in its own right, but that no one does anything about it serves as a red flag to what else lurks below the surface while officials conduct their “business as usual”.
The actual details of some of this behavior is mind numbing, particularly when you keep in mind L’Esperance lost his son as a result of a drug overdose at the tender age of twenty.
First, a little background from the town where L’Esperance was trained and nurtured before becoming one of the most notoriously corrupt Police Chiefs: Two of the three current West Newbury Selectmen, (Knowles and Cushing), [Wading into West Newbury’s political quicksand, August 29, 2011] have been on the Board for the majority of more than the past decade in the town where L’Esperance spent 20 plus years of training on the police force. Concurrent to the long overdue investigation into L’Esperance two towns over, in West Newbury Controversy swirls amid election May 2, 2011 around then Finance Director of 19 years, Tracy Blais.
Blais was married to former Police Chief of West Newbury, Jon Dennis, who in late 2007 was forced into early retirement entitling him to his Mass pension while he commutes ten minutes away over the border to serve as Police Chief in NH. As husband and wife became a power couple in West Newbury, and the two highest paid employees of the town, Blais unofficially ran the town, but husband Dennis gets all credit for L’Esperance’s rise to power, including conveniently promoting him to Sergeant just in time to qualify him to apply for Chief in Salisbury in 2006.
All of the above local West Newbury officials were and still are very cozy and considered close friends with State Representative Harriet Stanley, who, though stating this is her last term, has been ‘their’ rep for most of the 20 years this cabal was running the show. She has of recent, however, been unusually silent on all issues related to the Town she represents and lives in, EXCEPT In the matter of Tracy Blais April 27, 2011. Just prior to the election for Selectman where Dirty politics alleged in West Newbury document mailing March 21, 2011 centered on efforts to get Knowles re-elected from a seat he lost when he ran unopposed, Stanley came out in the local press in strenuous defense of Blais acknowledging their friendship, and making inquiries to the Inspector General on Blais’ behalf. (Also noteworthy, especially in the context of a mailing scandal, is that Selectman Cushing is, and has been the local mailman throughout this ‘era’).
The rebuttal to Stanley’s well, or ill timed published opinion, (depending on which side of the aisle you were on) was a letter to editor entitled Harriett Stanley, misrepresentative April 29, 2011. As is the case in most all the links provided, the blogger’s comments are even more insightful to what was, and is going on beyond what is in the articles themselves, most especially when Stanley herself chimes in on the blogs.
Stanley’s efforts to vindicate Blais confirmed the fact that Blais was under investigation by the Inspector General’s Office, and made clear Stanley was writing and intervening on her friend Blais’ behalf. The Blais controversy arose first from Selectmen divided over finance director’s job review September 14, 2010, and culminated with Town severs ties with administrator, February 19, 2011. But it was the Board disputes Blais’ bonuses March 9, 2011 that left Board mum on Blais’ dismissal March 4, 2011. All the while the Finance director denies wrongdoing, March 11, 2011 as citizens/taxpayers awaited the results of the first independent audit of the finance department in Blais’ 19 year tenure.
MEANWHILE: the beat goes on from the ‘origins’ of L’Esperance and those who helped his rise to power as …Against the wishes of one board member, selectmen met behind closed doors with former Finance Director Tracy Blais late …Atwood brings complaint over ‘off-record’ discussion » Local News …Atwood filed a formal Open Meeting Law complaint to the town clerk’s office Monday …Selectmen need to practice open government » Opinion …
Documents discovered about police » Local News » NewburyportNews …The file, found in the selectmen’s office by Selectman Tom Atwood, may indicate a … Atwood, who said he discovered the folder in a desk drawer one evening while …
Officials seek answers on probe of former police chief » Local … L’Esperance, 51, was arraigned last week on two felony and two misdemeanor counts of larceny. Three of the charges stem from allegations he …
Justice moves too slowly in police probe » Opinion …Since December, when L’Esperance was placed on paid leave from Salisbury police and the probe of the allegations began, there has been a …
L’Esperance investigation digs deeper » Local … Prior to being hired five years ago as Salisbury’s chief, L’Esperance had worked for more than 20 years in West Newbury. He retired earlier this …
Wading into West Newbury’s political quicksand » Opinion …West Newbury’s political turmoil has opened a Pandora’s box. Now it’s time for it to live with the detritus…
From Daily News August 30, 2011: A request by Atwood to have a discussion on the status of the audit put on the agenda for last Wednesday’s meeting was rejected by Knowles. Atwood asked that the chairman provide a list of outstanding actions that need to occur before the audit can be released and a time line for when they will be completed, to which Knowles responded, “so noted.” A public documents complaint filed by The Daily News after a request for the audit was denied by town counsel is being reviewed by state officials.
The board acknowledged receipt of a letter from Kristi Devine calling for a forensic investigation into the police department and possible abuses of power by L’Esperance and other officers. Both Knowles and Cushing declined to discuss the letter in detail until they had a chance to review it with town counsel and notify the police chief so she could be present for the discussion.
“It advised L’Esperance that he was not going to be covered by the town’s professional liability insurance coverage for a lawsuit from plaintiff Jeffrey Phaneuf,” Harrington said. “The particular letter would have raised a level of concern on my part if I’d seen it during (Special note: on all of the links to newspaper articles provided, there are bloggers, often adding to information not otherwise in the articles.)
At his arraignment, L’Esperance stood before the same prosecutor and judge he worked with over the last decade plus to bring charges against those ‘he’ was charging and arresting. He was ordered to reappear to the same courthouse in August. (In sharp contrast to L’Esperance, a Police Chief who is alleged to have traded drugs and money for sex, and has thus far only been charged for larceny, a former police officer in Plainfield, MA has been indicted by a grand jury for drug possession following an investigation by the AG’s office – http://www.norwichbulletin.com/news/crime/x311102151/Former-Plainfield-cop-indicted-in-Mass#axzz1Rqv5QqQk)
A more chronological report, including links to news articles, videos, and further updates follows this recent report of his ARRAIGNMENT (from when his badge and gun were finally removed after a 24 plus year career in law enforcement). During this time, taxpayers funded his tuition to LAW SCHOOL, and now this corrupt, disgraced Police Chief currently practices law in the very courts he is being arraigned in when he is a known threat to public safety.
Read more and see video: 11 Jul 2011 http://www.myfoxboston.com/dpp/news/crime_files/crime_watch/ex-mass-police-chief-faces-criminal-charges-25-apx-20110711
(in unrelated, but “related” news, the forensic audit regarding the former finance director of West Newbury, wife of former police chief who L’Esperance mentored and was empowered by, has been released. The public has not been allowed to see what they paid $25,000.00 for, because the same selectmen who still refuse to do an independent investigation of their police department where L’Esperance was a police officer for 20 years before becoming Salisbury’s Chief, are on their third revision and will not say when the public can see it: http://www.newburyportnews.com/local/x614900220/Financial-auditor-Its-pretty-bad )
Posted July 4, 2011: We can only hope that the former Police Chief of Salisbury, David L’Esperance, is the worst of the corruption in Massachusetts’ police departments, but there is little reason to have confidence in that being the case given what’s known of L’Esperance’s corruption and crimes, and that he has not even been charged for a single one of them. Fact is, after he was stripped of his badge and gun, and put on paid leave pending an investigation, things have only gotten better for L’Esperance. He resigned from police work when the scheduled interview with the investigator was to commence so that he would not be obliged to cooperate. This provided that he could collect his close to $60,000.00 annual taxpayer-funded pension at the tender age of 50, in addition to receiving a windfall of almost $50,000.00 for back sick and vacation days. All the while, those who knew him said he ‘worked’ very few hours a day, and likely committed more crimes than most of the “alleged” criminals he put behind bars.
But, it gets better, or more accurately WORSE for citizens and taxpayers of the Commonwealth. L’Esperance, has joined a law office in Lynn, and literally practices law in the very courts that he prosecuted those, who according to the article below, may or may not have done anything wrong. While we read everyday of people arrested for things that pale in comparison to what witnesses, including police officers, claim in a long list of crimes committed by L’Esperance when on the police department, he walks among us freely as a known threat to public safety. That he practices law screams to the fact that something is very wrong with our system. At its root is that throughout L’Esperance’s career, he was empowered and emboldened to commit more and more crimes and wrongs with raises and promotions from public officials who ignored the outcry from their citizenry, as well as police. Most chilling is the lives he’s affected and destroyed as this article from a newspaper details the story of just one of what is likely to be many of those who suffered as a result of this corruption: (More information on L’Esperance can be found with links to various news sources at LAWLESSAMERICA, as well as elsewhere on this site)
Salisbury Town Hall February 14, 2011
For entire public meeting visit this link: http://www.salisburyma.gov/communityTV/SCTselectmenvideo.html
. . . and there’s always more points of interest in the blogs affiliated with every L’Esperance story:
SALISBURY — Former Salisbury police Chief David L’Esperance may have retired under the dark cloud of controversy due to allegations of criminal wrongdoing, but the town has paid him almost $44,700 in unused sick/vacation leave, as state law requires.
MORE LINKS: WEASEL AWARDS #579 goes to Salisbury, Massachusetts POLICE CHIEF – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iu1a7LQdz_g , 7 News – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQbGTVMGZYA&feature=related ,
Stay tuned, because this story will likely never end. Where is:
This page is continually updated with new developments in these various stories emanating from L’Esperance’s recently unveiled abuses of power. Many more people may go down if ever the investigation of him is expanded to all who aided and abetted in his criminal activities and his rise to power as this is just tip of the iceberg. Check back later and frequently.