Re: “Capitol Police chief faces criticism for posting far-right conspiracies” (Jan. 16, Page B1):

Advanced EMT Nathaniel Lombardi, left, and paramedic Rebecca Quinn carry a woman through the snow to a waiting ambulance in Fairfield on Dec. 21. People who publicly disparage COVID containment measures undercut efforts by health care providers to keep the virus from spreading. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

Of the bizarre stories that appear in the paper these days, this one is right up there.

It’s upsetting news, in light of Maine’s struggle to combat the COVID pandemic, that Russell Gauvin, chief of the police force that provides security at the Maine State House, holds and publishes on social media, dating to last summer, counterproductive opinions: criticizing Black Lives Matter; mocking the use of masks, suggesting it was part of a bigger plot to control the public, and sharing that he had zero confidence in the result of the election that saw Joe Biden defeat President Trump, calling it “a psychological operation of epic proportions.”

Can this man separate his beliefs and still, as he graciously stated, “As chief of Capitol Police, and as a law enforcement officer, I take seriously my duty to uphold our laws, to do so in a fair and impartial way, and to protect the Capitol and our people”?

The comments he published are doing damage to the efforts of Gov. Mills and Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and increasing the risk to the lives of our valiant doctors, nurses and hospital workers.

Bonnie Tallagnon

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