Three firefighters sue the city of Westfield based on retaliation allegations in 2019

Three firefighters sue the city of Westfield based on retaliation of sexual abuse allegations
Published: Jan. 26, 2023 at 9:36 PM EST
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WESTFIELD, MA. (WGGB/WSHM) - Three Westfield firefighters are currently in the process to sue the city that employs them.

According to court documents obtained by Western Mass News, Captain Rebecca Boutin and firefighters Kyle Miltimore and David Kennedy are suing the city based on retaliation allegations, after they were fired in 2019.

The three firefighters said they were fired for reporting sexual abuse allegations against then deputy Fire Chief, who is now the Westfield Fire Chief Patrick Egloff.

Court documents state Egloff allegedly assaulted a noble hospital nurse after the St. Patrick’s day parade in 2016.

The allegations came to light in January in 2018, when three firefighters said they heard of the incident from other firefighters.

Plaintiff Miltmore told a state trooper about what he heard, regarding Egloff, and a case was launched by the Massachusetts State Police.

However, the attorney who was representing the three plaintiffs, Maurice Morris Cahillane, told Western Mass News the investigation ended with no charges filed.

“The two alleged victims decided they didn’t want to press charges or go forward with it,” said Cahillane. “The city of Westfield then conducted their own investigation and eventually that investigation blamed my clients, Captain Rebecca Boutin, David Kennedy, and Kyle Biltimore for, to put it broadly, creating controversy and causing problems in the department for having told state police what they knew.”

In December 2019, the three firefighters were “terminated because of violations of the rules, regulations, and operating procedures of the Westfield Fire Department,” according to court documents.

“It’s discrimination, retaliation, and wrongful termination but it all really comes down to retaliation for having talked to the state police,” said Cahillane.

In February of 2020, the three firefighters filed this retaliation lawsuit and complaints with the state’s Civil Service Commission and Department of Labor Relations.

The city was then ordered to reinstate the firefighters in November of 2022.

However, they have remained on administrative leave since.

“They ordered that before they were reinstated, they be put on administrative leave until the Westfield Fire Commission conducted a new investigation, did training in the department, and disciplined the new chief, who had been promoted, for the assault that he admitted to. That hasn’t happened,” explained Cahillane.

Western Mass News reached out to the Westfield Law Department and told us they have no comment.

Mayor Michael McCabe was also not able to comment since he is a party in this case.

We reached out to Chief Egloff regarding the sexual assault claims, but we have not yet heard back.

A jury trial is scheduled for April 3 at 9 a.m. in Hampden Superior Court.