3 MBTA Transit Police officers charged with fraudulently collecting over $14K in pay

All of the officers have resigned from their positions.

Blake Nissen for The Boston Globe

Three former MBTA Transit Police officers are facing charges after they allegedly collected over $14,000 for time they did not actually work, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office.

Former Lt. Kenneth Berg, Sgt. Michael Adamson, and Sgt. Jason Morris were each charged with one count of larceny of more than $250 by a single scheme, prosecutors said in a statement Friday. All three are due to be arraigned in Boston Municipal Court on July 20.

“Members of law enforcement are, and should be, held to a higher standard. The integrity of the entire criminal legal system rests on the integrity of those who work within the system,” said District Attorney Rachael Rollins. “When an officer of the law commits a criminal act, it strikes at the very heart of our criminal legal system. How can we be holding people accountable for misdeeds and actions when we are cheating, lying or stealing ourselves? It goes against everything we are meant to stand for and is the very definition of hypocrisy.”


Each of the former officers charged allegedly left early or did not attend work for shifts they were fully compensated for, according to Rollins’s office. TPD investigated each one independently and subsequently turned the probes over to the state Office of the Inspector General and Suffolk County prosecutors.

“TPD initially launched an investigation into Lt. Berg’s actions in 2015, after receiving an anonymous tip regarding his repeated absences or early departure from shifts,” prosecutors said. “That investigation included a review of GPS data from Lt. Berg’s assigned cruiser, which indicated that he was absent during portions of his regular shifts on 26 separate occasions between June 23, 2014, and June 16, 2015. During that same timeframe, he was absent for part or all of 39 additional overtime shifts that he claimed to have worked. In total, he received $8,460.97 that he never earned or worked for, thus he was not entitled to.”

In December 2015, the department learned Morris left early from a detail assignment, and the ensuing investigation included reviews of his department keycard data and the department’s parking lot security camera footage, according to officials.

Prosecutors allege Morris was absent from portions — up to seven hours — of 16 regular, eight-hour shifts between Oct. 2 and Dec. 24 of that year.


“He was absent from an additional 16 overtime shifts for as much as 7.5 hours per shift, meaning he missed up to 93.7 percent of those shifts and was paid as if he had worked 100 percent of the shift,” officials said. “As a result, he was paid $4,354.55 for time he never worked.”

An internal investigation into Adamson’s work was launched after the department received a complaint regarding one of its cruisers parked overnight in a residential area in Winthrop.

“A review of GPS data from Sgt. Adamson’s cruiser and other evidence revealed that he was absent from portions of his shifts on 15 separate occasions between October 25, 2017, and February 14, 2018. In total, he was paid $1,228.36 for hours he never worked,” prosecutors said.

Berg resigned in 2017, and Adamson resigned in 2018. Morris resigned in lieu of termination, according to Rollins’s office.

In a statement to WCVB on Monday, TPD Chief Kenneth Green said the allegations are “a profound disappointment.”

According to Rollins, the names of the three officers will be placed in the Law Enforcement Automatic Discovery database.

“We will work with the criminal defense bar to expedite any reviews of arrests or other involvement these individuals were involved with,” she said. “Their dishonest and criminal behavior has potentially called into question all of the police work they have done.”


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