Former police leader defends handling of abuse allegations
BOSTON (AP) — A former Boston police commissioner is pushing back against allegations that he failed to take action against a now-retired officer who was accused of sexually assaulting a minor in the 1990s.
In a statement released late Tuesday, Paul F. Evans said he and other officials did “everything that could be done” to hold the officer accountable at the time. He challenged the account put forward Tuesday by Acting Mayor Kim Janey, who said previous police leaders had “neglected their duty to protect and serve.”
Evans issued the statement after the city released documents from a 1990s internal affairs investigation into Patrick Rose, a retired officer who was able to keep his badge despite a 1995 criminal complaint for sexual assault on a 12-year-old child.
The records revealed that an internal police investigation concluded there was enough evidence to support the allegations against Rose, and that Evans was notified of the finding in a 1996 memo. Janey called it “deeply unsettling” that Rose stayed on the force for two decades and later served as president of the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association.
Evans defended his handling of the case, though, saying it was referred to prosecutors and children’s services. He said a criminal complaint was issued in Roxbury District Court, but the case was dropped because the victim declined to testify.
“Everything that could be done by the Boston Police Department was done in this matter to hold Rose accountable,” Evans said.
In his statement, Evans called on the city to release the internal affairs report in its entirety, saying it would show the full scope of actions taken against Rose. The city has released 13 pages and said it was withholding the rest to protect the identity of victims.
“The final result of this case was unsatisfactory in the 1990s; it continues to be unsatisfactory now,” Evans said. “But to suggest that there was any lapse in leadership or dedication to bring this case to a different conclusion is not consistent with the facts.”
Janey ordered the release of the records after The Boston Globe reported on Rose’s case earlier this month.
Rose now faces 33 charges involving six alleged victims. He has pleaded not guilty and his lawyer says he maintains his innocence.