PITTSFIELD — A veteran city police officer who recently marked two decades on the force has been on paid administrative leave since last month.
Pittsfield Police Chief Michael Wynn declined to comment on specifics regarding the decision to remove Officer Dale Eason from active duty.
In an email received Thursday afternoon, Wynn said, "The City of Pittsfield and the Pittsfield Police Department are unable to comment on personnel matters."
The department would not specifically comment whether Eason is being investigated but denied a public records request into Eason's status, claiming both privacy and investigatory exemptions.
Wynn directed all other questions regarding the matter to the office of the city solicitor.
City attorney Richard Dohoney confirmed Eason's job status, but declined further comment, also citing the issue as a personnel matter.
Dohoney said Eason's leave was effective on May 17.
The department also would not comment whether any disciplinary hearings had been held or are planned regarding Eason.
While it's unclear why Eason has been placed on leave, internal emails provided to The Eagle earlier this year show his conduct having been called into question before.
Those emails were part of a series of internal correspondence between members of the department regarding the June 2015, arrest of 88-year-old Phyllis Stankiewicz after Eason and Officer Jennifer Brueckmann were sent to the wrong address for a disturbance call.
That encounter led to the woman being "ground stabilized" and arrested, after allegedly threatening the officers with a knife.
The charges against Stankiewicz were dropped soon after.
In those emails, Capt. David Granger described Eason as one of the department's, "most problematic officers when it comes to the use of force and good judgment."
"I believe if we sent any other combination of officers from this department to the call it would NOT have ended in an arrest," Granger wrote.
According to the department's Facebook page, Eason marked 20 years on the force in late April.
Contact Bob Dunn at 413-496-6249.