Letter: An Evident Lack of Leadership in East Providence


To the editor,

The latest controversy within the East Providence Police Department provides a compass to the solution.

Chief Tavares has served for some four years as the Chief of Police.  For the most part this was characterized, publicly at least, as rather benign.

Yet, recently, evidence of deeper, more troubling aspects of the Chief’s tenure has emerged.

A significant majority of his own command voted no confidence in him.

Political maneuvering brought in the State Police to conduct an investigation.  This uncovered nothing criminal but is telling of the management techniques in place that stirred the issue.

Now, Chief Tavares himself has asked for the State Police to conduct regular patrol operations within the City to “motivate” his officers. This strikes me as odd. Wouldn’t the ability to motivate members of your command be a prerequisite for the position of Chief of Police?

I have the greatest respect for the State Police, but if the solution to all the problems within the cities and towns is to have the State Police take over, than do it.  It won’t happen, because it wouldn’t work.  Their Uniform division serves a different purpose.

This is a local Chief that has lost the respect and control of his department.

To be a leader does not require those in your command to like you, it doesn’t require them to agree with you, it doesn’t even require their consent to your authority, it does require their respect.

Respect cannot be demanded, cannot be compelled, and cannot be ordered. It must be earned. And, once lost, it is virtually impossible to recover.

By seeking outside assistance to accomplish the responsibilities of the position of Chief of Police, Chief Tavares acknowledges he has lost the respect of the members of his command, and therefore the ability to lead that department. A  true leader would recognize this and step aside for the good of the organization.

Joe Broadmeadow

Captain (Ret.) East Providence Police Department

Albion, R.I.


7 comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment
Rumford Resident

So this letter has been proven to be total BS.

The chief did not ask the RI State Police to come into EP?

So all of this noise was based upon BS letters like this and facebook posts....

The EPPD clearly has a flair for the dramatic

While they may have no-confidence in the chief, the average citizens (and the NAACP) have full faith in Chief Tavares and zero confidence in hacks like the writer of this letter and of their union hack leader Feeney....

I havent seen a more phony scandel since the union teacher hacks thrust 'No Recess' on us a few years back.

What a true joke EP has become

Tuesday, August 27, 2013 | Report this

Rumford Resident

Since you hide behind a nickname it is difficult to give your comment any real attention, but I will gladly take your call at any time to discuss your frustration with the men and woman of the EPPD. The author of that letter is one of the most decorated members in EPPD history with an unblemished career. If you would like the facts, just ask me for them.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013 | Report this
Rumford Resident

Oh, I think my reply got some 'real attention'

I will remain anonomous.

I do notice that you fail to repond to the fact that this letter was provent to be totally non-factual. Basically drivel.

As to the officer being decorated and unblemished, I cant speak to that fact.,

Was he around the first time the state police came into town....

When Officer Ray Studley was called in as the EPPD was known to be corrupt and a total mess

The thing that you cant hide from Union Leader Feeney is that the average resident understands that your membership is more focused on their own interests and trying to show up an honest police chief and doing their job and marching in the Mermorial Day parade.

You guys continually overplay your hand and look foolish....

Those are the facts.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013 | Report this
Joe Broadmeadow

I normally wouldn't be compelled to respond to someone who lacks the courage of their convictions and criticizes anonymously.

But in this case I will make an exception.

"Rumford Resident" dismisses the vote of no confidence in the chief as insignificant posturing by the union. I beg to differ. This department has been through a similar situation before and the union was the one group that stood firm for the truth, and ultimately were proven correct.

Several news organization reported the increased presence of the State Police, if Chief Tavares didn't ask for them, and if Rumford resident had taken the time to actually read my letter, I said it seemed strange that a Chief would call them, then perhaps something else is amiss.

In any event, it does not negate the fact that this Chief has lost the respect of the men and women of that department. This is as proud, professional, honest group of Law Enforcement professionals. As good as, if not better, than most.

It will be evident over time where the truth resides.

As to the anonymous Rumford Resident and his contention that (and I quote);

"the average citizens (and the NAACP) have full faith in Chief Tavares".

The very fact that he makes such proclamations without having the courage to stand up and put his name behind it, is evidence of the little value such statements have.

Joe Broadmeadow

Captain (Ret.) East Providence Police Department and very proud of it.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013 | Report this
Rumford Resident

Several news organizations reported about the of 'recess' as we know it....

That was clearly a bogus story put out by the teachers unIon

Now we have a bogus story trumpeted by the retired union officer

I have no problem with state police involved in the community.

But the EP union police have thei agenda against this honest chief

And I simply pointed out what a waste of energy these false stories are for our chief

Oh, and I remain anonymous and that is a crime?

Instead of arguing the facts, the liberal always blows smoke

The silent majority didn't inhale this time

Thursday, August 29, 2013 | Report this
Joe Broadmeadow

Dear Rumford Resident,

I am not sure how you manage to derive my political bent from reading one letter, so your assumption that I hold liberal views is, well, you know what they say about assume.

It is clear from your responses that you prefer ad hominem attacks rather than the "facts" you so obviously ignore.

I will tell you this, you may have a legitimate argument against the teacher's union. It has nothing to do with smoke, unions, or political philosophies. It does have to do with spelling.

As for the anonymous part, it is not a crime, but it is an indication of convictions.

Joe Broadmeadow

Captain (Ret.) East Providence Police and still very proud of it.

Thursday, August 29, 2013 | Report this
Rumford Resident

I admit i did better in Civics than in spelling,...

But spelling on an iphone is more challenging than on a computer, so i will be sure to use a dictionary on future posts....

I was able to provide my son with a great Civics lesson at the Memorial Day Parade in EP this year....

That was the parade where the proud officers of this EPPD did not choose to march and rather make a political statement (sure their union leader Feeney dictated that)

I also bet they will march tomorrow since their political friends run this parade....

That is the problem with this force and it has been the problem for years

That is why the state of RI needs to come in and oversee things every few years

The same political mind set that guides Feeney et al requires adult supervision for this force....

Makes you wonder if the RI State Police needed to add classes in babysitting to their class list to manage the EP force.....

And it makes sense why the EPPD rebels every time they see a state police cruiser drive through EP

The average citizen sees a state police cruiser and is glad to see a professional doing their job...

The author of this letter and the union hack leader Feeney sees a conspiracy....

Sunday, September 1, 2013 | Report this

2016 by East Bay Newspapers

Barrington · Bristol · East Providence · Little Compton · Portsmouth · Prudence Island · Riverside · Rumford · Seekonk · Tiverton · Warren · Westport
Meet our staff
Mike Rego

Mike Rego has worked at East Bay Newspapers since 2001, helping the company launch The Westport Shorelines. He soon after became a Sports Editor, spending the next 10-plus years in that role before taking over as editor of The East Providence Post in February of 2012. To contact Mike to submit information, suggest story ideas or photo opportunities, etc., email mrego@eastbaynewspapers.com.