NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

December 1, 2012

Methuen cop suspended for Salisbury bar fight

METHUEN — A Methuen police officer accused of assaulting a 25-year-old woman during a bachelorette party brawl at a Salisbury Beach bar last summer will serve a 90-day unpaid suspension from his job.

Shawn Tardif, 38, will also volunteer at a violence prevention program, undergo an alcohol and anger-management assessment and submit to random alcohol testing for three years, according to the terms of a two-page disciplinary decision.

Methuen police Chief Joseph Solomon said the discipline — a one-year, unpaid suspension in which Tardif will serve just three months — is the result of an “in-depth investigation” by the Methuen Police Department that began after Tardif was arrested Aug. 4.

“It’s a pretty harsh punishment,” Solomon said. “It shows how seriously we take off-duty behavior.”

Tardif was arrested by Salisbury police while off-duty and unarmed after a brawl at the Surfside 5 Bar and Grill. The six-year veteran of the Methuen Police Department was charged with assault and battery and wanton destruction of property over $250. Tardif admitted to sufficient facts and was sentenced Nov. 20.

Tardif was placed on paid administrative leave after his arrest and later returned, minus his firearm, to restricted desk duty a week later. He is set to begin serving his suspension tomorrow and could return to work Feb. 23.

The nine-month balance of Tardif’s suspension will be held in abeyance for three years, meaning he will be required to serve the remainder if he gets into trouble in the future, Solomon said.

Tardif has also agreed to forfeit 10 vacation days, volunteer 40 hours at a violence prevention program within the next six months, undergo an alcohol and anger-management assessment and attend any counseling that is recommended as a result.

He has also agreed to refrain from drinking alcohol for a minimum of a year and undergo random alcohol testing for three years.

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