Billerica Dispatcher Resigns Over Alleged Affair
BILLERICA -- A police dispatcher voluntarily resigned after being placed on paid administrative leave following an alleged affair with a police detective that sources say led to distractions at work.
Dispatcher Kate Murphy resigned effective June 30, according to Deputy Police Chief Roy Frost. The other party, Detective Daniel O’Leary is still on paid administrative leave and the investigation remains open, Frost said last week.
“These things may take some time,” he said. “We would like to move forward from this.”
Murphy and O’Leary were placed on paid administrative leave in early April after being warned months earlier to end their alleged relationship, sources told The Sun earlier this year. Sources said it had caused “outbursts” and “scenes” in the department.
Co-workers at the Billerica Police Department are allowed to have romantic relationships outside of work, but the alleged affair interfered with work duties, sources said.
Outside the alleged affair, Murphy filed a “hostile work environment” complaint against her supervisor, following a dispute over a sick day. Officials ruled the complaint was unfounded after an investigation.
Murphy was a School Committee member from 2014 to 2017.
In 2007, O’Leary was also placed on paid administrative leave when he became entangled in a soured romance between a lieutenant and sergeant.
The Fire Department was also the subject of a scandal last year. Three firefighters and a dispatcher were suspended after an on-duty sex scandal in both the central and Pinehurst fire stations.
Unlike the Fire Department, the two police employees are not alleged to have had sex on duty, according to sources. The issue is not systemic, but an isolated personnel issue, the sources said.
Requests to the town and Police Department for total payments to Murphy and O’Leary while on paid leave were not returned in time for deadline.
O’Leary did not respond to a request for comment. Murphy did not return a request for comment by deadline.
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