An eighth state police trooper was arrested on Wednesday and two previously charged retired troopers agreed to plead guilty in connection with the ongoing investigation of overtime abuse at the Massachusetts State Police Department.
Heath McAuliffe, 40, of Hopkinton, was arrested Wednesday morning on an embezzlement from an agency receiving federal funds charge following a criminal complaint, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Prosecutors allege McAuliffe received $9,825 in overtime pay for hours he didn't work or for shifts for which he left at least an hour early.
McAuliffe appeared in federal court for his arraignment Wednesday.
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Meanwhile, two retired troopers — 58-year-old Charlton resident David Wilson and 57-year-old Daren DeJong of Uxbridge — have agreed to plead guilty to the same charge McAuliffe faces. Wilson will plead guilty to being paid $12,450 for overtime hours he didn't work, while DeJong will plead guilty to being paid $14,062.50 for his ill-claimed overtime hours, according to prosecutors. Both men face a prison sentence of between six months to a year.
Wilson and DeJong were arrested and charged on June 27 and July 25, respectively.
McAuliffe is the eighth trooper to be arrested and charged in connection with the ongoing scandal, which broke earlier this year. With Wilson and DeJong's plea agreements, seven former or suspended troopers have pleaded guilty or agreed to do so, including Gregory Raftery, 47, of Westwood; Kevin Sweeney, 40, of Braintree; Gary Herman, 45, of Chester; Paul Cesan, 50, of Southwick; and Eric Chin, 46, of Hanover.
The troopers were all members of the now-eliminated Troop E, which had been assigned to enforce criminal and traffic laws along the Massachusetts Turnpike.
A spokesperson for the Massachusetts State Police say the actions described in court Wednesday do not define the agency.
At least 30 state police troopers have been investigated as part of the ongoing overtime pay scandal, which had been exposed by an internal audit. GPS locators have also been activated for more than 1,000 state police cruisers as part of the ongoing reforms launched by Gov. Charlie Baker.
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Earlier this year, NBC10 Boston Investigators found that the law enforcement agency was paying a tab of nearly $273,000 in unused vacation and sick time that had been accrued for six former troopers who had been criminally charged at the time.