BOSTON (AP) — A former Massachusetts State Police lieutenant has avoided jail after admitting to his role in a widespread overtime abuse scandal that roiled the department and led to several reforms.
David Keefe, 57, the former commander of the Weston barracks, was sentenced Thursday to two years of probation after pleading guilty to larceny and violating public employee standards of conduct, the state attorney general’s office said in a statement Friday.
Keefe was also ordered to pay $20,000 in restitution and complete 100 hours of community service.
Keefe submitted fraudulent claims for more than 200 hours of overtime that he did not work in 2015 and 2016, prosecutors said. At the time, he was a supervisor in the now disbanded Troop E, which was responsible for traffic enforcement along the Massachusetts Turnpike.
Dozens of active and retired troopers who worked for Troop E were implicated in the scheme in which they collected overtime pay for shifts they either did not work or did not complete, authorities said. In some cases, troopers issued falsified traffic tickets to make it appear as if they had been on duty.
The scandal led to criminal charges against many troopers and several reforms at the agency, including GPS tracking in cruisers, increased supervisory oversight, regular time and attendance audits, and additional ethics training.
Keefe, who has retired, was among three lieutenants indicted in the case. The other two have previously pleaded guilty.