HomeTop StoriesAshland Police Chief Cara Rossi's final hearing is Friday: What we know

Ashland Police Chief Cara Rossi’s final hearing is Friday: What we know

BOSTON – Ashland Police Chief Cara Rossi will face a final judicial hearing Friday before a hearing officer from a state agency.

A final preliminary hearing was held by the Peace Officers Training (POST) Commission on Monday. The hearing — as will be Friday’s final hearing — was heard by hearing officer Judith Cowin, a retired Supreme Court justice.

Monday’s hearing was brief, with Cowin, POST Commission attorney Shuan Martinez and Rossi’s attorney Leah Barrault discussing witnesses who appeared in person or via Zoom. Friday’s hearing will take place in person in Boston.

Ashland Police Chief Caraa Rossi, pictured here as a Natick Police lieutenant, has a hearing with the POST Commission on Friday.

Ashland Police Chief Caraa Rossi, pictured here as a Natick Police lieutenant, has a hearing with the POST Commission on Friday.

More: Ashland’s police chief has been placed on paid administrative leave, the city manager says

The POST committee has not said specifically why Rossi is before them, other than to say it is related to the James Quilty case. Quilty is a former Natick Police Department sergeant convicted of sexually assaulting a former female dispatcher.

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That dispatcher filed a civil suit in Norfolk Superior Court and Rossi, who was a lieutenant in Natick at the time, is named as a defendant. The coordinator alleges in her lawsuit that Rossi aided and abetted Quilty by urging the coordinator not to file a formal complaint. Rossi has denied the allegations.

More: Victim of former Natick police sergeant’s attack has filed charges against him, city

What we don’t know about the upcoming hearing

The MetroWest Daily News has filed a public records request with the POST Commission to obtain the complaint against Rossi. The request was submitted on February 14.

The POST Committee responded on February 27 within the ten days required by law and requested additional time. They still haven’t completed the review of the request.

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What is the role of the POST Commission in Massachusetts

According to the POST Commission, the purpose of a judicial hearing is to suspend an officer or revoke his certification to work as an officer and order retraining. An official can appeal against any decision.

What is Cara Rossi’s job now?

Rossi was hired as Ashland’s police chief in May 2022 and officially started in July of that year. Previously, she was an officer in Natick, reaching the rank of lieutenant.

Ashland Town Manager Michael Herbert placed Rossi on paid administrative leave in January. He did not reveal the reason.

Rossi signed a contract extension last September that gave her a $15,500 raise. The new contract, obtained by the Daily News through a public records request, extended for another year, a pact that was originally set to end in 2025, and increased her annual salary by 9.5%, from $162,500 to $178,000. Rossi and City Manager Michael Herbert signed the contract, which was retroactive to July 1, 2023, on September 25.

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Read more about the agreement: Ashland’s police chief was given a contract extension months before he was placed on leave

Norman Miller can be reached at 508-626-3823 or nmiller@wickedlocal.com. For current public safety news, follow Norman Miller at X @Norman_MillerMW or on Facebook at facebook.com/NormanMillerCrime.

This article originally appeared on MetroWest Daily News: Massachusetts POST Commission to hold hearing on Ashland police chief

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