Tuesday, September 23, 2014 10:39pm
North Adams, MA now: 57 °   
Send news, tips, press releases and questions to info@iBerkshires.com
The Berkshires online guide to events, news and Berkshire County community information.
SIGN IN | REGISTER NOW   

Home About Archives RSS Feed
Wynn: No Other Officers Implicated In Steroid Probe
By: Staff Reports On: 06:21PM / Wednesday April 06, 2011
Important
0
Interesting
0
Funny
0
Awesome
0
Infuriating
0
Ridiculous
0

Police Chief Michael Wynn

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — No other police personnel are being investigated for using steroids and the one officer admitting to using the drugs has been given "the most severe discipline" that could be imposed, according to Police Chief Michael Wynn.

Wynn addressed "rumor, innuendo and speculation" surrounding the findings of steroid use by Officer David Kirchner with a statement released late Wednesday afternoon.

The response comes nearly three weeks after the allegations, which include state Trooper Daniel Gale of the Russell barracks in Hampden County, became public and a week after Berkshire District Attorney David F. Capeless released his own statement on the matter.

"Where there is one, there must be others" has been the train of comments and postings in the local blogosphere (PlanetValenti has been ground zero for following the incident.). Wynn says that's not the case but leaves wiggle room in his statement and refers to the investigation as "ongoing":

"Finally, in regard to this matter, there is no indication from the ongoing investigation, that any other member of the Pittsfield Police Department is implicated in this probe. Should that prove to be the case at some point in the future, each of those potential allegations will be handled with the same intensity and thoroughness as this one."

Kirchner, who has been suspended, demoted and removed from the Berkshire County Drug Task Force, admitted to the allegations and accepted responsibility, said Wynn.

"This discipline (suspension coupled with loss of assignment), is the most severe discipline that I can impose as a chief of police, given the nature of the allegations and Officer Kirchner's lack of prior disciplinary findings," the police chief writes.

Wynn said he was "professionally" disappointed in Kirchner's actions and describes him as a "hard-working, dedicated, and proven member" who "accepted difficult and dangerous assignments to protect our community."

Kirchner, he notes, has not been charged with anything and there was limited evidence from the internal probel. The disciplinary actions, the chief states, "it exceeds the punishment that most nonlaw enforcement personnel would receive under similar circumstances."

The allegations apparently arose from a U.S. Postal Service investigation. The IA probe found electronic communications evidence that detailed Kirchner's drug preferences; an unidentified person told investigators that Kirchner had purchased the drugs for personal use.

Wynn's statement is below:


April 6, 2011

For the past several weeks, the Pittsfield Police Department has been the subject of a variety of stories fueled by rumor, innuendo and speculation. Despite the department's efforts to remain above the sensationalism by responding only to those stories and those inquiries that we could address with fact, the speculation has continued. I believe that the men and women of the Pittsfield Police Department deserve to have an official response made for the record.

First, I would like to point out that during this entire course of events, the city and Police Department have responded to every media request as quickly and completely as possible. While the timing and content of some of these releases has drawn criticism, we are constrained by law in what information we can release and when we can release it.

Whenever some members of an organization are cast in an unflattering light, it is easy to paint the entire organization with the same, wide brush. Such gross generalizations are unfortunate and unfair. 

The Pittsfield Police Department consists of approximately 120 hard-working and dedicated professionals, who provide high-quality police services to the city of Pittsfield, every minute of every day and every day of every year. In addition to the high-caliber police services that our personnel provide, we are also extremely involved in the community. Department members regularly give of their own time to improve our community. We are coaches, teachers, mentors, scoutmasters, and board members. We are active in our children's schools and in our churches. We provide the same energy and passion to our off-duty activities as we do to our professional performance.

The public should be assured that sworn officers of the Pittsfield Police are held to an even higher standard than the people they serve and protect. We have one of the most robust Internal Affairs Policies of any local law enforcement agency. Decisions regarding matters of internal discipline are evaluated against several factors including an evaluation of both criminal and civil service law, an analysis of the department's rules and regulations and policies and procedures, cases of prior discipline against the officer and findings for similar cases in the past.

While I am professionally disappointed by the recent actions of Officer David Kirchner, I think that it is important to point out that prior to this incident, Officer Kirchner has enjoyed a reputation as a hard-working, dedicated, and proven member of both the Department and the Berkshire County Drug Task Force. He has consistently accepted difficult and dangerous assignments to protect our community, been commended and decorated for his performance on numerous occasions and is committed to his family and our community.

Immediately upon being informed of the allegations against Officer Kirchner, the department took steps to confront the allegations and contain the impact of the allegations on current operations. Officer Kirchner was relieved of his duties and informed that he was the subject of an administrative investigation. When confronted with the allegations, Officer Kirchner accepted responsibility for his actions, volunteered to accept appropriate discipline, and waived his due process rights to appeal the discipline imposed.

Based on the information provided by the investigating agency, I conferred with members of the command staff and the department's labor attorney and I imposed appropriate discipline on Officer Kirchner.  This discipline (suspension coupled with loss of assignment), is the most severe discipline that I can impose as a chief of police, given the nature of the allegations and Officer Kirchner's lack of prior disciplinary findings.

This punishment was based on the mere allegation of wrong-doing and a limited amount of physical evidence. It exceeds the punishment that most nonlaw enforcement personnel would receive under similar circumstances. Officer Kirchner has not been charged in connection with any criminal investigation, yet has already been administratively disciplined. This certainly does not indicate any preferential treatment for department personnel.

Finally, in regard to this matter, there is no indication from the ongoing investigation, that any other member of the Pittsfield Police Department is implicated in this probe. Should that prove to be the case at some point in the future, each of those potential allegations will be handled with the same intensity and thoroughness as this one.

The men and women of the Pittsfield Police Department continue to provide quality, professional police services to the residents of our city and beyond. We will continue to do so during these trying times and after they are behind us. As the department's chief of police, I stand behind our personnel and their performance. In those rare instances that our people's performance is less than ideal, we have a history of investigating those instances fully and disciplining appropriately. We will continue to do so in each and every case brought to our attention.

Sincerely,

Michael J. Wynn
Chief of Police



2 Comments
Tags: steroids, police, probe      
News Headlines
Williams Men's Soccer Ties RPI
MCLA Women's Tennis Rolls, Men's Soccer Falls
Clarksburg to Decide Spending, Bylaw at Special Town Meeting
Annual Fall Run Fundraiser Roars From Adams on Sunday
Lanesborough Eyeing Police Station Renovation
North Adams Housing Authority Accepts $3.5M Budget for 2015
Butler Takes Over As Chamber President
Williamstown Selectmen Seek Flag Submissions, Set Tax Rate
Williams Seniors Urged to Be Open to New Experiences
Cat Who Survived Tornado Visits Pittsfield's Berkshire Pathways
Crimewatch Links

North Adams CrimeWatch

Stamford/Clarksburg CrimeWatch

Pittsfield CrimeWatch

Emergency: 911
Adams 413-743-1212
Clarksburg 413-663-7795
Cheshire 413-743-1501
Dalton 413-684-0300
Great Barrington 413-528-0306
Lanesborough 413-443-4107
Lee 413-243-2100
Lenox 413-637-2346
North Adams 413-664-4944
Pittsfield 413-448-9700
Richmond 413-698-3315
Stockbridge 413-298-4179
Williamstown 413-458-5733
West Stockbridge 413-232-7938
State Police  
Cheshire Barracks
413-743-4700
Lee Barracks 413-243-0600
Shaftsbury, Vt., Barracks 802-442-3263

 



Categories:
Adams (33)
Alford (0)
Becket (6)
Cheshire (9)
Clarksburg (27)
Dalton (4)
Egremont (0)
Florida (4)
Great Barrington (9)
Hancock (4)
Hinsdale (2)
Lanesborough (12)
Lee (11)
Lenox (9)
Monterey (0)
Mount Washington (0)
New Ashford (3)
New Marlborough (1)
North Adams (124)
Otis (2)
Peru (1)
Pittsfield (134)
Pownal (9)
Readsboro (9)
Richmond (8)
Sandisfield (2)
Savoy (4)
Sheffield (2)
Stamford (25)
State (1)
Stockbridge (4)
Tyringham (1)
Washington (1)
West Stockbridge (1)
Williamstown (48)
Windsor (1)
Archives:
September 2014 (11)
August 2014 (21)
July 2014 (13)
June 2014 (16)
May 2014 (15)
April 2014 (10)
March 2014 (12)
February 2014 (2)
Tags:
Police Buglaries Stabbing Armed Robbery Search Break-ins Vehicle Missing Persons Shooting Robbery Motor Vehicle Accident Homicide Crash Accident Missing Motor Vehicle Oxycodone Fatal Fire Cocaine Structure Fire Dui Crime Watch Rape Injuries Mvi Drugs Embezzlement Drug Charges Arrest Murder Veremko Larceny Assault Fraud
Popular Entries:
Great Barrington Crashes Leave Two Dead
North Adams Woman Killed in Route 2 Crash
North Adams Man Crashes SUV Into Home
Man Killed by Bull in Clarksburg
Kincaid Pleads Guilty to Aggravated Rape
North Adams Man Arraigned on Child Porn Charges
Cariddi Auto Sales Burns
Donations Reach State Road Fire Victims
Pittsfield Police Identify Parking Garage Death
Mayor's Wife Arrested for Shoplifting
Recent Entries:
Superior Court Briefs: Sept. 16 - Sept. 18
Possible Abduction Attempt in South Berkshire
Superior Court Briefs: Sept. 8 - Sept. 11
Pittsfield Police Log: Sept. 9 - Sept. 15
Two-Car Accident Detours Traffic in North Adams
North Adams Police Searching for Armed Robbery Suspect
Pittsfield Police Log: Sept. 6 - Sept. 8
Pittsfield Police Log: Sept. 2 - Sept. 5.
Superior Court Briefs: Sept. 2 - Sept. 4
Former Lee Police Chief Facing Federal Charges


View All
Soccer: Commerce vs McCann
McCann Tech's Fuller Closing in on Hundredth Point. Nico...
UCP Annual Meeting 2014
United Cerebral Palsy of Berkshire County dedicated its...
Volleyball: St. Joe s vs...
Saint Joseph's 18 13 13 0 Wahconah 25 25 25 3
Girls Soccer: Mt Greylock vs...
The Wahconah girls soccer team earned its fifth straight...
Soccer: Hoosac Valley vs...
Hoosac, Taconic Boys Play to Scoreless Tie
Football: Wahconah vs Drury
Final at Drury, Wahconah over Drury 42-6.
Girls Soccer: Lenox vs Hoosac
Hoosac Valley posts an 8-2 win over Lenox.
Walk a Mile at 3rd Thursday
The annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, kicking of September's...
Barrington Stage BYP Social
Berkshire Young Professionals were at the Barrington Stage...
Soccer: Wahconah vs...
The Pittsfield boys’ soccer team had the complete package...
Soccer: Taconic vs Drury
Drury boys soccer 3-1 loss to Taconic, Wednesday afternoon....
Golf: Monument vs Mount...
Two standout rounds for Mount Greylock and one standup move...
Volleyball: Lee vs Mount...
Lee 3, Mount Greylock 0, The visiting Wildcats won 25-23,...
Soccer: Mount Greylock vs...
Eric Hirsch scored twice and set up two goals to lead the...
Josh Billings RunAground 2014
The team from Pittsfield's Allen Heights Veterinary won the...
Football: Amherst vs Williams
Football: Amherst vs Williams in a scrimmage on Saturday...
Soccer: Commerce vs McCann
McCann Tech's Fuller Closing in on Hundredth Point. Nico...
UCP Annual Meeting 2014
United Cerebral Palsy of Berkshire County dedicated its...
Volleyball: St. Joe s vs...
Saint Joseph's 18 13 13 0 Wahconah 25 25 25 3
Girls Soccer: Mt Greylock vs...
The Wahconah girls soccer team earned its fifth straight...
Soccer: Hoosac Valley vs...
Hoosac, Taconic Boys Play to Scoreless Tie
| Home | A & E | Business | Community News | Dining | Real Estate | Schools | Sports & Outdoors | Berkshires Weather | Weddings
Advertise | Recommend This Page | Help Contact Us | Privacy Policy| User Agreement
iBerkshires.com is owned and operated by: Boxcar Media 102 Main Street, North Adams, MA 01247 -- T. 413-663-3384 F.413-664-4251
© 2000 Boxcar Media LLC - All rights reserved