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City officer accused: A pawn in a political game

A District Court judge last week found Manchester Police Officer William Soucy not guilty of domestic abuse. The accusation might have been little noticed had Manchester Alderman At-Large Joe Kelly Levasseur not thrust Soucy's name into the media spotlight as part of his effort to portray city police as corrupt and abusive.

Levasseur, an attorney, represented Soucy's former girlfriend, who made the abuse allegation. Levasseur has every right to be a forceful advocate for his clients. But in this case Levasseur used his public office to advance his private client's case by portraying her as a victim not just of one officer, but of a conspiracy of officers.

In July of last year, Levasseur claimed that police were protecting Soucy. "No one would arrest him. No one would get back to her. She was afraid," he said.

Levasseur's complaint was investigated by the Attorney General's office at Manchester Chief David Mara's request. Contrary to Levasseur's claims, the AG's office found that Manchester police investigated the allegation and referred it to the Hooksett Police Department, as the abuse allegedly happened in that town. A Hooksett police officer interviewed Soucy's ex-girlfriend and tried to follow up with her the next business day to see if she wanted to press charges. She did not respond to several attempts to contact her. Fearing for the woman's safety, the officer asked the Manchester police to check on her. Two officers conducted a well check, and Levasseur later claimed that this attempt to protect his client was actually an attempt to intimidate her. The AG's report found no grounds to substantiate any of Levasseur's claims.

Now Levasseur is alleging that the Hooksett Police Department mishandled the case. The blame-shifting and allegations of misconduct never end. Is any area police department — or officer — safe from Levasseur's wild accusations as long as he remains in office?

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