BOSTON (State House News Service) — Boston Mayor Kim Janey will task the incoming director of the city's new Office of Police Accountability and Transparency with a comprehensive review of how the Boston Police Department handles internal affairs, Janey announced Thursday.
When she tapped Stephanie Everett last week to lead OPAT's launch, Janey instructed the attorney to examine the case of Patrick Rose, who faced allegations of sexual assault on a child but remained on the force for two decades longer and rose to lead the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association.
Two days after her administration released redacted internal affairs files concerning Rose, Janey on Thursday expanded the scope of Everett's mission, calling on her to deliver a plan for "review and reform" of BPD's internal affairs process within the first 45 days of Everett's tenure.
The internal affairs files show that then-Boston Police Commissioner Paul Evans was informed in 1996 that investigators believed Rose had sexually abused a child, but allowed Rose to return to patrol under pressure from the union. As the Boston Globe reported, Rose would later be accused of abusing five more children before his arrest last year.
"There is nothing more important than ensuring that something like this never happens again," Janey said at a press conference. "The fact that a Boston police officer could be accused of sexually abusing a child, that that accusation would be sustained by the Boston Police Department, that that officer would not be terminated, that that officer would be accused of abusing other children and still stay on the force for another 20 years and rise through the ranks and become the president of the union is indefensible, and that would not happen under my watch."
Janey, the city's first Black mayor, also described "collective relief" on Thursday about the guilty verdict a jury delivered on Tuesday in the murder trial against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, though she added that "our work is not done."
"We must all remain steadfast in the pursuit of racial justice," Janey said. "The murder of George Floyd and countless others demonstrates the urgent need to reform and reimagine how we protect and serve our communities."
By Chris Lisinski, State House News Service