Friday, December 4, 2009

MA State Trooper Severely Reprimanded

The Cape Cod Times reports on the case of Lt. Richard Bolduc, 52, of Sandwich who was punished for not securing his weapon properly at home.

In June 2008, the veteran trooper's son, who was 12 at the time, grabbed Bolduc's Sig Sauer P226 .40-caliber handgun from an unlocked bureau, took it to a neighbor's house, pointed it at a 5-year-old girl and pulled the trigger. The gun was not loaded, according to Sandwich police, but during their investigation, police found a loaded clip in the same unlocked drawer.

The punishment, which was not disclosed, could have been anything from a written reprimand to firing. It seems it was closer to the former.

But a law enforcement source said Bolduc, who earns a base salary of $90,564.76, was allowed to give up 20 vacation days for violating two department regulations — the policy requiring guns to be safely stored and conduct unbecoming a police officer. By avoiding a suspension, Bolduc doesn't lose any seniority, said the source, who is familiar with state police discipline.

I don't believe this kind of thing is the biggest problem we have in the gun control movement. The biggest problem is the ease with which straw buyers can pass the guns they buy legally to criminals and remain hidden by a system designed to protect them. That's the biggest problem. But second to that is this kind of sloppy gun security.

The accidents which result from situations like this, although I don't think they can be dismissed as negligible like the pro-gun crowd keep saying, do represent only a tiny percent of the gun violence that happens. More than accidents, guns that are easily stolen and pass into the black market are a significant problem.

What's your opinion? Is giving up a few vacation days appropriate punishment for the watered down charges that were filed against Officer Bolduc?

Sandwich police charged Bolduc with improper storage of a firearm, which is a felony, but that case was dismissed by a judge citing a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that called the constitutionality of gun storage laws into question. He could have faced up to 10 years in prison if he had been convicted of that charge.

Is this another version of the "blue wall of silence?" Is this special treatment given to a cop that probably wouldn't have been given to someone else? Is that fair?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.


  1. If he weren't a cop, he'd be sitting in a jail cell right now.

  2. The biggest problem is the ease with which straw buyers can pass the guns they buy legally to criminals and remain hidden by a system designed to protect them.

    As has been pointed out elsewhere, the current system allows any gun recovered in connection with a crime to be traced to the person who actually bought it from the gun shop. The current recordkeeping system was built to allow this kind of legitimate trace while preventing law enforcement from making a comprehensive list of law-abiding citizens who own gun and what guns they own.

    The current system allows crime guns to be traced to straw buyers, _and_ addresses our concerns about potential confiscation of politically unpopular guns. Why exactly do you wanna monkey with it?

  3. Ah, sorry--premature post.

    Also, this cop behaved irresponsibly and should be punished much more severely than lost vacation time. I don't know that he should necessarily be fired, but a suspension (and, if it comes with one, a demotion) is definitely called for.