August 16, 2012

Clinton officer arrested on assault charges, placed on leave

Derek Levasseur is charged with five counts of simple assault and one count of domestic violence assault, according to a town official.

By Ben McCanna bmccanna@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

CLINTON — A reserve officer for the town police department was arrested recently on six charges, but few details are available.

Derek Levasseur was charged earlier this month with five counts of simple assault and one count of domestic violence assault, according to Town Manager Aaron Chrostowsky. He is now on unpaid administrative leave pending an investigation.

Maine State Police is handling the case, but Lt. Donald Pomelow said a report of the incident hasn't been completed by Trooper Joe Chretien. Pomelow said he won't be able to provide a time, date or place of the incident or arrest until Thursday morning.

"The report doesn't give me enough information at this point," he said.

Pomelow said he believes the incident occurred more than a week ago, and it wasn't reported to police until the next day. Originally, Levasseur was going to be summoned for simple assault, but additional information led to his arrest on a charge of domestic violence assault.

Department of Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland is on vacation this week and could not be reached. McCausland's assistant Donna Hall referred all questions to Pomelow.

District Attorney Alan Kelley did not respond to messages left with his secretary.

An intake worker at Kennebec County jail, who wouldn't disclose her name, said jail workers were notified of Levasseur's arrest and expected to receive him shortly afterward, but later discovered Levasseur had posted bail at the police station where he was arrested and was released. The intake worker did not recall the date of arrest, where it occurred or where he posted bail. She said jail policy prevents her from releasing her name to the media.

Clinton Police Chief Craig Johnson said he couldn't comment on the case because it's being handled by state police. Levasseur, as a reserve officer, worked on a per diem basis. He was hired by the town in February and worked fewer than 20 days since then, Johnson estimated.

Chrostowsky also couldn't comment on the case, but said the town would hold an internal investigation.

"We're taking the matter seriously," he said.

Levasseur could not be reached by phone Wednesday.

Levasseur also served for less than a year as a deputy for Kennebec County Sheriff's Office, according Capt. Dan Davies. The sheriff's office hired Levasseur in March 2010.

In August 2010, Levasseur attended a basic law enforcement training program at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy and graduated four months later in December.

Levasseur resigned before completing his first year of employment. Davies said he couldn't discuss anything else about Levasseur's tenure because personnel matters are confidential.

Ben McCanna -- 861-9239

bmccanna@centralmaine.com

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