EAST PROVIDENCE — East Providence City Manager Peter Graczykowski offered up his response to the press release issued by the Rhode Island State Police Thursday, July 11, into alleged misconduct on the part of city officials in regard to the employment status of Police Chief Joseph Tavares.
The Budget Commission asked the State Police to inquire as to whether members of the City Council, specifically Ward 4 representative Chrissy Rossi and Ward 3′s Thomas Rose Jr., had used undue influence in attempting to have Chief Tavares removed from his position. The five-week long investigation did not result in any criminal charges being brought.
“I am not surprised by the conclusions of the investigation by the Rhode Island State Police,” Mr. Graczykowski said his statement. “As expected, both the City officials and hard working officers of the East Providence Police Department have been cleared of any wrongdoing in this matter.”
Allegations of a quid pro quo deal between Mr. Graczykowski and the Councilors emerged during the Budget Commission’s own look into the matter. Mr. Graczykowski was accused of cutting a deal where he would remove Chief Tavares from his position in return for a new contract to continue as City Manager.
“That’s absurd,” Mr. Graczykowski said of the alleged agreement. “And as you know, I still I don’t have a contract.”
Mr. Graczykowski, himself a member of the Budget Commission, added he fully cooperated with the State Police during their inquiry.
Mrs. Rossi met with State Police investigators but also referred requests to legal counsel. Mr. Rose did not speak with the investigators, referring all requests for information to his legal representation.
The State Police also looked into corruption allegations made by Chief Tavares against the E.P. Police Department, again finding no wrong doing. With no charges having be made, Mr. Graczykowski said he believes everyone involved has been vindicated through the process.
“It is worth mentioning that this is the second time in a few years that the State Police were asked to investigate alleged improprieties in East Providence, and again, could not substantiate any evidence,” he added. “This should assure the citizens of East Providence as to the integrity of City officials and Police Department.”