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Fremont settles suit by former police chief

Union Leader Correspondent

July 02. 2013 10:00PM

FREMONT — The town has settled a lawsuit brought by former Police Chief Neal Janvrin after he was fired last August.

Selectman Greta St. Germain, board chairman, confirmed that a settlement has been reached, but that the terms of the deal have not yet been released.

St. Germain said the agreement will become public within the next two to three weeks.

Janvrin, 66, was fired after nearly 23 years as chief and filed a wrongful termination suit in October.

In their notice of dismissal, selectmen said Janvrin was “physically unstable in the field” and had a “confrontational” attitude toward other officers, among other things.

Selectmen also said that Janvrin failed to observe established procedures and protocols and that his “judgments and decision making are inconsistent and demonstrate memory lapses, lack of comprehension, and unpredictability,” the notice said.

Janvrin denied the allegations and said the firing was “discriminatory.” He insisted that his decisions weren’t inconsistent and that he didn’t violate any policies. He also argued that he had a clean personnel file.

A final settlement document was signed by selectmen on June 12 following an emergency closed-door meeting.

“The matter has been resolved and I really can’t disclose any more at this time,” said the town’s attorney, Charles Bauer of the Concord law firm Gallagher, Callahan & Gartrell PC.

Janvrin’s lawyer, Andru Volinsky of Bernstein Shur of Manchester, also declined to provide details of the agreement Tuesday.

“We have resolved the chief’s case through settlement, but I am not able to reveal the terms pursuant to the agreement,” he said.

Meanwhile, selectmen are getting closer to hiring a new chief. An advisory committee has conducted interviews and is expected to make recommendations to selectmen at a meeting tonight.

St. Germain said six people applied for the part-time position. After the committee offers its recommendations, she said selectmen will conduct interviews before making a final decision. The board plans to hire a new chief by Aug. 1.

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