HALLOWELL — On Monday evening, city councilors will hold their first meeting since the Kennebec Journal disclosed a police officer’s sexual assault allegation against Chief Eric Nason.

In June 2013, the 22-year-old female officer’s claims against Nason set off a four-month Maine State Police investigation completed in October with no charges filed against Nason, 48.

He was never disciplined by the city and has worked with the officer ever since. Third-party experts who reviewed case documents for the Kennebec Journal for a June article criticized the city’s response and the chief’s relationship with a subordinate.

As is typical, members of the public will be allowed to comment on any city issues early in Monday’s monthly council meeting, set for 6 p.m. at City Hall.

But since state law deems personnel matters confidential, discussion of Nason’s situation would require councilors to go into executive session, in which members of the public and the press must leave the chambers.

Still, the reasons for sessions must be disclosed. Also, any vote must be taken publicly after the private discussion. Two executive sessions are on Monday’s meeting agenda: One will be to discuss a personnel issue; the other to discuss “potential litigation.”

City Manager Michael Starn didn’t immediately respond to calls on Monday seeking comment on the sessions, but councilors have said they will discuss the issue at the meeting.

Starn has said City Attorney Erik Stumpfel is expected to participate in the meeting to answer councilors’ questions on their legal role in a potential personnel investigation.

The state police investigation came after a June 2, 2013 encounter at Nason’s camp in which the officer maintains that she was too intoxicated to consent to sex with the chief, who has said through an attorney that the two had consensual sex that night.

The state has withheld most of the documentation detailing the investigation into the allegation, and the Kennebec Journal is suing the state in Kennebec County Superior Court for police reports and other case accounts.

Michael Shepherd — 370-7652

[email protected]

Twitter: @mikeshepherdme


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