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Home » News » Crime

July 23. 2014 8:10PM

Hillsborough County court officer fired after arrest

MERRIMACK— A court officer in Nashua, accused of sexually assaulting a young girl over a four-year period, was placed on leave and then terminated from his position after being arrested this week.

David S. Morse, 72, of 18 Highland Green, allegedly began assaulting the girl in Merrimack in 2010 on her sixth birthday, according to court documents. The alleged sexual contact continued up to July 1 of this year.

Police arrested Morse on Monday, charging him with three counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and two counts of felonious sexual assault against the juvenile, now 9.

Morse, who had been a court officer at the Hillsborough County Superior Court South in Nashua for 12 years, is no longer employed in his position.

“I did terminate his employment on Tuesday,” said Hillsborough County Sheriff Jim Hardy. “When we became aware, and when we were informed that there was a criminal investigation, I did immediately place him on leave.”

Lt. Denise Roy of the Merrimack Police Department said authorities received a report of the alleged sexual assaults more than a week ago.

Police are continuing to investigate the case, trying to determine if potentially more charges may be warranted, or whether there possibly may be additional victims, said Roy.

Roy would not elaborate on whether Morse was arrested at the Nashua court where he works, but did say he was taken into custody in Nashua and transferred to the Merrimack Police Department.

Hardy declined to comment on the allegations against Morse while court proceedings are pending. He did state, however, that there are plenty of court officers in Nashua — about 17 or 18 — that will be able to handle the absence of one employee.

“These court officer positions, they don’t require the same credentials as a deputy sheriff or a state trooper or a city police officer,” explained Hardy. “These are not certified police positions. They don’t have that strict certification process.”

For all of Hillsborough County, there are about 71 court officers on the roster, he added.

Morse, who is married, was arraigned Tuesday at the 9th Circuit Court-District Division-Merrimack. He is being held on $100,000 cash or corporate surety bail, and will be back in court Tuesday for a probable cause hearing.

A police affidavit has been sealed at the courthouse, although the criminal complaints against Morse have been made public. The charges allege that Morse allegedly sexually assaulted the girl on five separate occasions at his residence, touching her inappropriately and engaging in various sexual acts.

If released on bail, Morse has been ordered to have no contact with the victim or her immediate family, and may not be alone with anyone under the age of 18.

Prior to his employment at the Nashua court, court documents state Morse worked for Boston and Maine Railroad in Billerica, Mass., for about 40 years.

khoughton@newstote.com


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