LACONIA — The dismissed Laconia police recruit who is facing charges of threatening to stage a mass murder-suicide at last Friday’s police academy graduation has been released from jail is now under house arrest with his family in Connecticut.
Superior Court Judge John Kissinger Jr. on Monday authorized an arrangement reached between Noah Beaulieu’s attorney, Mark Sisti, and Assistant Merrimack County Attorney Carley Ahern’s office. Beaulieu was being held at the Merrimack County Courthouse Monday morning, but he did not appear in court.
Beaulieu, 24, will have to wear a monitoring device while he is out on bail and will also have to check in daily with Merrimack County Pre-Trial Services, Sisti explained.
Sisti said he and the Merrimack County Attorney’s office reached an agreement on the bail conditions Friday, but Beaulieu remained in custody over the weekend so the judge could study the psychiatric evaluation more closely.
“I think they needed a perfected psychiatric eval and once the judge was satisfied it was complete and satisfied with the result, (Beaulieu) was released,” Sisti said.
Sisti declined to discuss any of the evaluation’s contents or conclusions, but he said Beaulieu has no history of mental health troubles.
“I can tell you he has no mental health issues in his past,” Sisti said. “He went through extensive screening for the military. He has no alcohol or drug problems. … He has no criminal record whatsoever.”
Laconia Police Chief Matt Canfield said the department would review its applicant screening process in the wake of the Beaulieu episode.
"We have a staff meeting this week and it will be a topic of discussion,” the chief said. “We’ll take a look at our processes and see if there is something to tweak. We have a very thorough process and we weed out a lot of candidates, but if there is a weakness, we will weed it out."
Sisti reiterated his statements of last Thursday that Beaulieu had not broken any law.
“He denies any attempt to harm anybody, whether it be himself or others,” Sisti said. “Intent is everything,” he continued. “The whole context of any statements that may have been made is going to have to be filtered through that whole lens of intent in order for there to be any kind of criminal act.”
Beaulieu was arrested by State Police last Wednesday and charged with two counts of criminal threatening. According to court records, he talked to fellow police academy cadets about staging a mass shooting during the academy graduation last Friday and said he would bring machine guns and was encouraging others to join him in a suicide pact.
Sisti pointed out that his client has yet to be indicted.
“There’s just a charge out there right now,” he said. “Whether this charge is the charge the state goes forward with, that will be determined later on.”
Beaulieu’s bail conditions include that cannot return to New Hampshire except for court hearings or meetings with his lawyer, that he stay away from the State Police academy, that he cannot live anywhere where firearms are present, and that he submit to screening by a licensed drug and alcohol counselor for the potential need for drug/alcohol treatment or education.