In ex-trooper’s 23 years, he never saw anything like this
As a former Massachusetts state trooper, now retired, it was painful for me to read Andrea Estes’ Nov. 8 front-page article regarding the trooper who was ordered to change his arrest report (“Trooper says he was forced to alter report on judge’s kin”). I can testify to the fact that this outrageous incident is not a true reflection of the Massachusetts State Police. Our history has not been without its problems, but we always took comfort in the fact that our actions were aboveboard. Hopefully some public scrutiny of this event will assist the State Police in regaining this tradition.
Trooper Ryan Sceviour acted in the best tradition of the Massachusetts State Police when he complied with a direct order, and then instituted a legal challenge. Such an order strikes at the heart of the integrity of a police department.
The State Police spokesman, David Procopio, gave the impression that reviewing troopers’ reports and changing them was a common occurrence. He was mistaken. Ordering a trooper to change his personal firsthand account of an event that led to an arrest was something that I never witnessed in 23 years on the job.
This is not in keeping with the mission of State Police
The only “edits” to this police report should have been statements like my father is “going to kill me,” since that was not relevant to the alleged crimes. Such edits did not require rousing a trooper out of bed, which in itself implies secrecy and wrongdoing.
The complex issues surrounding truth in a police officer’s report can best be seen in a short film called “The Report.”
I commend the officer in this case for not allowing the truth to be redacted.
State troopers do an incredible job of keeping our Commonwealth safe every day, and they have my deepest respect.
Forcing a trooper to falsify a report under duress is not in keeping with their mission or oath to serve and protect all citizens.