Criminal charges against a former Portland police officer who was arrested in Massachusetts in January will be dismissed in three months if she stays out of trouble, a Worcester judge ruled Tuesday.

Portland police officer Zahra Munye Abu was arrested by Worcester, Massachusetts, police on charges of assault and battery, resisting arrest, trespassing, disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace at a January concert.

Zahra Munye Abu, 25, Portland’s first Somali police officer, was charged at a Jan. 13 Ja Rule concert at the Palladium on Main Street in Worcester after she allegedly began acting unruly and refused to leave the premises when asked to do so. In a report filed in court, Worcester police said the 5-foot-2, 130-pound police officer, who resigned last week, was acting aggressively toward concert hall staff and pushed her way through the crowd, “physically assaulting several customers.”

Told by security and police that her behavior was unacceptable and she was no longer welcome on the property, Abu was asked to leave “two to three dozen times,” according to the report. The report alleges that Abu swore at police, questioned their training and time in service and “refused to cease her profanity-laced comments toward staff.”

Abu could not be reached at the Portland addressed listed for her in Massachusetts court records. A woman who answered the phone there said Abu does not live at the home anymore.

Abu resigned from the Portland Police Department June 10, before the completion of an internal affairs investigation into her conduct, although she still could face sanction from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy Board of Trustees, who oversee police officer certification in Maine.

Accompanied by her lawyer, Michael H. Erlich, she admitted to sufficient facts for guilty findings Tuesday on the assault and battery and resisting arrest charges.

Judge David P. Despotopulos found sufficient facts for guilty findings, but continued the charges without findings for three months, during which time Abu will be on administrative probation, according to court records. The charges will be dismissed Sept. 25 if Abu has no further difficulties with the law.

As conditions of probation, she was ordered to stay away from the Palladium and have no contact with James Roy, the Palladium employee she was charged with assaulting.

The remaining charges against Abu were dismissed at the request of Assistant District Attorney Dannon T. Stacer and with Abu’s consent.

The prosecutor had asked that the assault and battery and resisting arrest charges be continued without findings for one year, while Erlich requested the three-month continuances.

filed under:

Augusta and Waterville news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.


  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.