CONCORD — Merrimack County Commissioners say they support victim rights and advocacy programs, reacting in the face of claims that the county’s top prosecutor has broken up her office’s sexual assault prosecution team and questioned some sexual assault prosecutions.
County commissioners took the unusual step of issuing a statement after a suspended employee filed suit against the county and County Attorney Robin Davis last week.
“The County Commissioners wish to make clear that they have and will continue to support County sponsored victims’ rights and advocacy programs, as well as programs intended to assist local police departments with sex crime investigations,” said the board’s chairman, Tara Reardon, in a statement released Friday.
Also last week, Concord Police Chief Bradley Osgood said he was alarmed when Davis quickly dismantled the successful sexual assault prosecution unit.
“That unit was just gone in a month or so,” Osgood said.
The suit was filed last week by Jennifer Adams, a deputy for the Merrimack County Sheriff who was assigned as a full-time investigator to the Merrimack County Attorney, specializing as a sexual assault investigator. Adams has been on paid administrative leave since June 10, when she filed a complaint of hostile work environment and gender discrimination with the Merrimack County human resources director.
In the statement, commissioners said they have yet to be served with the lawsuit, and that they have limited sway over the county attorney.
“The Merrimack County Commissioners strive to provide all County employees with a work environment that allows them to successfully perform their duties. All County employees, including those working in the County Attorney’s office, have the ability to raise concerns regarding workplace issues. When appropriate, the County investigates employee concerns and determines the appropriate remedial measures necessary to resolve those concerns.” The County follows this process for all employee complaints.
Davis has said she cannot comment on the suit or her tenure as county attorney.
Osgood said he was troubled over statements in the lawsuit. Adams claims Davis told police chiefs that they work for her, that she will fight the cops, and that prosecutors should not be working so closely with police.
“I find that statement to be disturbing if that is truly an accurate statement,” Osgood said.