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City says suspension of officer was proper & warranted

LACONIA — The city has filed its response regarding the police officer who is challenging her two-day suspension in the Belknap County Superior Court.

The city's argument is that Patrol Officer Brandy Enis should have been punished because she violated three Police Department policies on three separate occasions. Their reasoning is that each separate violation of policy constituted "unsatisfactory performance" and three "unsatisfactory performance" violation earns some kind of suspension without pay.

In this case Chief Chris Adams recommended three days, however the Laconia Police Commission suspended her for two.

Enis's Attorney, Brad Davis, who was hired by the Laconia Police Association (union) to represent her, said all three of the policy infractions were for completely different things that don't add up to "unsatisfactory performance" violations.

City Attorney Laura Spector Morgan said that "the commission properly found that the allegation in this incident is of the same type at the prior violations, because Officer Enis failed to use due diligence in her decision making process in all three incidents.

Enis asked for her disciplinary hearing to be held in public and because the third incident involved a so-called civil standby for a local landlord, a number of landlords came to the meeting to support her.

According to Enis's superior officer and Spector Morgan, Enis should not have entered a tenants apartment with the landlord who had shown her proof that he had given the tenant the required 24 hours notice.

Spector Morgan said Enis violated the tenants civil rights by entering the apartment to make sure it was empty so the landlord could perform some routine maintenance in the basement.

Apparently the landlord was in the process of evicting the tenant and had argued with him the previous day. He said he called for a police presence because he was afraid.

The court paperwork is a petition for summary judgment which asks a judge to determine whether or not there are no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the petitioner (Enis) is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.
Both parties agreed that the case was not one for mediation but Belknap County Judge James O'Neill disagreed and ordered both parties to try to mediate before coming before the court.

Last Updated on Friday, 22 August 2014 01:06

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Proceeds from student's Saturday yard sale to go to disadvantaged youngsters

LACONIA — A New Hampton School student from Laconia will be holding a yard sale at 122 Morningside Drive on Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon to raise funds for The M.A.D.D.Y. Fund she started to help disadvantaged youngsters. Maddy Schumacher says she is continuously adding money to her Making A Difference for Disadvantaged Youth account through various activities, such as working in a restaurant, gardening and accepting donations from others. One-hundred percent of the proceeds from the yard sale will be added.

Next month, Schumacher plans to present a check to Kurn Hattin Homes, a year-round school for children from ages 5-14 who come from all over the country to be housed in Westminster, Vermont.

Schumacher says that last year she and 10 other students from New Hampton School spent a week in Westminster, helping in any way they could. "We painted walls, cleaned playrooms, organized closets. . . we were the helping hands . . . and did any chores the school staff other wise didn't have time to do," she said. "We also spent time in some of the classrooms and read to the students and helped them with their homework. At Kurn Hattin Homes, I was warmly welcomed into their family and was truly moved by the experience."

Schumacher says her goal is to raise at total of $3,000. "It was heartbreaking to see the kids living away from their families and living with only the basic necessities," she added. It made me realize how lucky I am."

Donations to the M.A.D.D.Y. Fund may be addressed to 122 Morningside Drive, Laconia 03246. Donations of clothes, books, kitchen supplies, tools, gardening supplies, sports equipment, etc. are also being accepted. Schumacher's phone number is 520-5443 and her e-mail address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Last Updated on Friday, 22 August 2014 01:03

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Franklin schools sign agreement with Boys & Girls Club to provide supplemental after-school programing

by Thomas P. Caldwell

FRANKLIN — The School Board has agreed to allow the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Concord to operate an after-school program out of the Paul Smith Elementary School, at no charge. The one-year agreement is predicted upon the expectation of serving an additional 50 students, while not taking away from the after-school program already being operated by the Franklin Parks and Recreation Department.
Superintendent Robert McKenney, who rejoined School Administrative Unit 18 in July, said he has been meeting with city officials as well as representatives of the Boys and Girls Club to see that the program would work for all parties. The agreement calls for regular meetings to assess how well it is working and to address any issues that may arise.
Crystal Alpers, who operates the city's after-school program, said there are approximately 70 students in her program. While some of them may choose to attend the Boys and Girls Club program, they anticipate having others join the city program for no net decrease in attendance.
Christopher Emond, executive director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Concord, said he believes there are many children who return to empty homes after school and he is hoping the Franklin program will attract more of them to participate in his program.
McKenney said that, if there are only transfers from one program to the other with no net gain, he would terminate the agreement. He said transfers would not count toward the 50-student enrollment goal and that he is hoping to get more younger children involved in after-school activities.
City Manager Elizabeth Dragon agreed that the goal was to enhance what Franklin already is offering. She noted that when Casey Family Services operated in the city, it only duplicated existing services for the same population.
Paul Smith Principal R. Michael Hoyt said his main concern has been the transportation issue. If the program draws students from the high-population area to the relatively remote Paul Smith School, it may create problems for parents picking up their children at the end of the day, he said.
School board member Ed Cogan questioned the superintendent on the additional cost to the School District. McKenney said the cost of heating and lighting the building for the extra hours would be negligible and well worth it if it served a larger population of students.
When the school board voted on the proposal, Cogan was the only one to vote against it.
The agreement became effective with the Aug. 18 signing and Emond planned to have the program in place by the start of school next week. He noted that many families already have signed up for the program.

Last Updated on Thursday, 21 August 2014 12:58

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Tea company finds Laconia 89% honest?

LACONIA — A nationwide social experiment conducted by Honest Tea, makers of organic beverages, found that 89-percent of people here — or at least the people visiting here — are honest, placing Laconia 12th among the 61 cities surveyed.

Kerrie Cassani-Levick of Creaxion, a marketing firm in Atlanta Georgia, explained that between July 16 and August 12 Honest Tea set up unattended racks of cold beverages, which were offered for $1 on the honor system. At each site the number of people who paid or just helped themselves, together with their gender and hair color, were observed and counted. Across the country 95 percent of people were honest compared to 93 percent in 2013.

In Laconia, the experiment was conducted on the boardwalk at Weirs Beach on Saturday, August 9 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Altogether 157 people participated, of whom 139 paid the dollar and 18 did not. Cassani-Levick said that all those who paid left currency, not bus tickets or grocery receipts.

The results indicated that honesty is on the rise in Washington, D.C., where 96 percent of people paid, 16 percent more than the year before, while in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Providence, Rhode Island the honesty index dropped by 12-percentage points to 81 percent and 80 percent respectively.

Women proved more honest than men by two points — 95 percent to 93 percent —and blondes of both genders were again the most honest.

Last Updated on Thursday, 21 August 2014 12:48

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