College employee taken into police custody

Williamstown Police Department officers respond to CSS report of disturbing remarks

On Sunday, a College Dining Services employee was taken into custody by the Williamstown Police Department (WPD) in Paresky Center. The employee had made statements that alarmed other employees, leading to concerns that he might be a danger to himself or others. Campus Safety and Security  (CSS) contacted the WPD at 5:45 p.m., according to a WPD media release. As such, WPD officers took him into custody for psychiatric evaluation.

“As a result of preliminary investigation, WPD officers issued, pursuant to Massachusetts General Law Chapter 123 Section 12(a)(b), a temporary involuntary hospitalization order,” WPD investigator Sergeant Scott McGowan wrote in a media release to the Record. “The individual was later transported by ambulance to Berkshire Medical [Center’s] Pittsfield campus for a mental health evaluation. The individual was released hours later after being cleared by medical staff.”

At least one student observed the incident and could identify the employee as a Dining Services staff member. “I was distracted when I entered Paresky through the back door, so I didn’t notice anything until I got through the door and saw a police officer on his way out, leading a man in a Dining Services uniform before him in a position that indicated the man was handcuffed. Several other Dining Services workers were gathered in the doorway of the nearby office,” Joelle Troiano ’20 said.

After being released from Berkshire Medical Center, the individual was interviewed by police and consented to a search of his home and computer, according to McGowan. “No suspicious or illegal items or materials were located,” McGowan said in the release. The employee has been charged with two misdemeanors: disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace.

Vice President for Campus Life Steve Klass stated that the individual in question is no longer employed by the College. “While we do not comment on confidential employee issues, we can confirm that the employee is no longer with the College,”
he said.

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