Earlier this month, members of the LGN class of 2019 met with public safety leaders in Nashua. It was the most entertaining day we have experienced yet.
First, Lt. Craig Allard guided us through a tour of the police department. This included a visit to the holding cell, evidence room, and the chief’s office.
Afterwards, Officer Dave Elliot showed off the Nashua Police Department’s new Bearcat, recently purchased in January. The Bearcat is valued at over $300,000. It is utilized by the Nashua Police SWAT team in response to active shooters, barricaded suspects, response and rescue, and executing high risk warrants. It is equipped with, among other impressive features, a thermoimage camera, extended battering ram, and a gas release system.
Officer Elliot utilized the Bearcat during a recent incident in Manchester. As you may have seen in the news, in late March, there was a standoff at a Manchester hotel. The standoff lasted over 15 hours. During which, officials closed off main streets in Manchester. The Bearcat was called up from Nashua to assist.
Next, Officer Dunn along with Mautz, a German Shephard and patrol and Narcotics dog, treated members to a demonstration. Mautz assists the Nashua Police in tracking criminals from crime scenes, searching for lost persons, apprehending fleeing suspects, searching for bodies, and detecting narcotics. During our class, Mautz showed off his athleticism and intelligence through an obstacle course on the police department’s grounds and also simulated an attack on a fleeing suspect.
After the demonstrations, we enjoyed a conversation over lunch with Nashua Police Chief Andrew Lavoie. Chief Lavoie recently announced his retirement after over 30 years on the job. Chief Lavoie discussed his leadership style and the priorities he established at the department. Primarily, Chief Lavoie sought to get away from a purely para-militaristic approach and, instead, embraced community policing. He also discussed recruiting challenges. Specifically, despite lower turn out and interest, Chief Lavoie has refused to lower the department’s high standards.
As a side note, as an assistant attorney general, I investigated and prosecuted a handful of murder cases with the Nashua Police Department. I worked closely with this agency for over three years. The high standards that Chief Lavoie discussed are true. This department is second to none. I truly mean that. There are great leaders throughout the department and I have witnessed their leadership first hand during high pressure and stressful investigations.
After visiting the police department, our class then moved to the Lake Street station of Nashua Fire Rescue. There, Captain Jim Kirk provided our class with a guided tour of the facility and a history lesson on Fire Rescue. Captain Kirk and his colleagues at the station showed off the department’s ladder trucks and other tools and vehicles used by the department. He also explained how Fire Rescue is a leader in the region often assisting other towns and cities with its dive team, ladder trucks, and other services, which are only provided by Nashua throughout this region.
After the tour, members met with Judge James H. Leary of the New Hampshire Circuit Court. Judge Leary explained the state judicial system, discussed some of the changes in the court throughout his tenure, and answered questions about criminal justice, leadership, and other topics. Most notably, Judge Leary discussed the creation of both the Drug Court and the Veteran’s Court. He explained how each was a result of leadership and creative thinking. He touted both programs as highly successful. In doing so, Judge Leary also touched on the principles of sentencing the accused upon a guilty plea or conviction after trial. He explained that punishment is not the only factor in fashioning an appropriate sentence.
Also, this month, members of the class of 2019 presented at a chamber event and held an alumni reception at the Nashua Country Club in an effort to promote our upcoming event, Get on Board Nashua. For more information on the event, click here Get On Board Nashua. We hope to see you at the event on May 22, 2019, at the Event Center at the Courtyard Marriot in Nashua.