Mass. fire lieutenant allegedly assaulted female dispatcher, placed on leave

Adam LaFlash, 36, of Sturbridge, was arraigned in Dudley District Court Monday on three counts of incident assault and battery on a person over 14

Scott J. Croteau, Springfield, Mass.

An Auburn Fire Department lieutenant was placed on paid administrative leave after he was accused of sexually assaulting a female dispatcher in Sturbridge.

Adam LaFlash, 36, of Sturbridge, was arraigned in Dudley District Court Monday on three counts of incident assault and battery on a person over 14 and two counts of assault and battery.

Court records show LaFlash, who is a full-time fire lieutenant in Auburn and an on-call firefighter/paramedic in Sturbridge, was released after posting $200 cash bail.

He was ordered to stay away from the alleged victim and ordered to return to court on June 10.

Auburn Fire Chief Stephen Coleman Jr. said LaFlash is now on administrative leave.

“We are aware of the allegations against one of our members that occurred in the Town of Sturbridge while working secondary employment with the Sturbridge Fire Department,” Coleman said in a statement. “The employee has been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of court proceedings as well as our own internal investigation on the matter.”

MassLive reached out to Sturbridge fire officials for comment.

According to a police report on file in court, Sturbridge police began investigating a report of sexual assault on Sunday.

A woman working as a dispatcher at the Sturbridge Public Safety Complex said she was working Saturday into Sunday morning when she dispatched an ambulance for a traffic stop.

LaFlash was one of the firefighters who responded. LaFlash then returned to the complex after taking the driver involved in the traffic stop to the hospital, police said.

The female dispatcher was in the dispatch center when LaFlash walked inside around 1 a.m. Authorities said while the dispatcher sent a crew to another ambulance call, LaFlash pulled her chair close to him and he began to “kiss her and grope her.”

The woman, according to police, told LaFlash to stop.

LaFlash allegedly sexually assaulted the dispatcher and didn’t let her go until she had to respond to the radio.

The woman told investigators LaFlash grabbed her again and pulled her arm hard.

According to police reports, LaFlash left when he heard the ambulance return to the public safety complex around 2:47 a.m.

The woman told police LaFlash has sent her what she believed to be inappropriate text and Facebook messages. The woman began exchanging messages with LaFlash in 2018 when she heard he was nice, but then became uncomfortable with his messages and blocked him on her cell phone, the police report said.

The woman decided not to apply for a harassment prevention order, police said.

Investigators spoke to LaFlash. He allegedly said the dispatcher invited him to kiss her. He denied that the woman told him to stop.

Authorities arrested LaFlash and seized his license to carry a firearm.


©2019, Springfield, Mass.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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