12 Springfield officers under investigation after alleged 2015 i - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

12 Springfield officers under investigation after alleged 2015 incident

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(Western Mass News photo) (Western Mass News photo)
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -

Twelve Springfield police officers are now under investigation for an alleged incident that took place in April 2015.

A group of off-duty officers allegedly fought with a Springfield man at a local bar. 

Those off-duty officers - and the on-duty officers who responded to the scene - all got disciplinary letters, the city confirmed to Western Mass News.

It all started at Nathan Bill's Bar and Restaurant in April 2015.

A group of off-duty officers reportedly got into an argument with a 48-year-old Springfield man and his cousins.

An employee of the restaurant on-duty that night told Western Mass News that the men then got into a physical fight in the parking lot of Rocky's Ace Hardware, which is about a five minute walk from Nathan Bill's.

The man who allegedly suffered physical injuries filed a complaint that has been investigated by the police department's internal investigating unit and is now pending a hearing before the civilian board.

In a statement, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno said, in part, "Where so many officers are involved, it is not unusual that the investigation process can take a long time to sort out."

That's why the city's police commissioner asked the Hampden County District Attorney's office to review the complaint.

The investigation process is lengthy, according to the city's law department, and will take some more time.

The victim's lawyer told Western Mass News that her client has been unable to work since the incident and has a surgery scheduled this November.

He was not available to meet today because he cannot afford childcare and was watching his daughter.

The Springfield Police Department declined to comment.

According to Mayor Sarno's statement, those officers are still all employed while charges are pending.  He said that no officer can be suspended for more than five days without a hearing.

The hearing date has not been decided yet.

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