BOSTON (AP) — A new Boston police oversight board has found the department moved too slowly and did not do enough to protect the public when an officer was accused of child sex abuse in 1995.
Internal affairs investigators took nearly a year after learning about the allegations before interviewing Patrick Rose, and even after concluding that he probably sexually abused a 12-year-old child, he was not punished other than to be limited to desk duty for two years, the Office of Police Accountability and Transparency said in a report released Thursday.
“Swift action should have been taken” acting Mayor Kim Janey said at a news conference. “It is shameful that it seems the actions taken were to protect their own, rather than to protect children.”
The office, in recommendations included with the report, said future investigations should start within 48 hours of notification, and there should be clear policies and procedures in place to ensure a thorough and independent response by the Internal Affairs Division.
Everyone involved in Rose’s case has since left the department, Janey said. The commissioner at the time, Paul Evans, has previously said he “did everything that could be done” to hold Rose accountable.
Even after the initial abuse allegations, which were eventually dropped, Rose continued to work until retirement in 2018, eventually becoming head of the police patrolmen's union.
He was arrested last August and remains held awaiting trial on 33 charges alleging he abused six children over decades. He has pleaded not guilty and his lawyer says his client maintains his innocence.