MILLINOCKET, Maine — Officer Kevin Ingersoll resigned from the Police Department effective Nov. 1 for personal reasons, the town manager said Tuesday.
Town Manager Eugene Conlogue declined to comment further, calling Ingersoll’s resignation a personnel issue, after telling the Town Council of Ingersoll’s decision during an organizational meeting on Monday.
During that meeting, he issued a two-sentence letter, dated Oct. 29, in which Ingersoll announced his resignation and wrote, “Thank you for the opportunity to serve the town of Millinocket and its citizens.”
Conlogue also announced the resignation effective Oct. 14 of Detective Ron McCarthy for a medical disability that Conlogue again declined to describe.
Conlogue and almost every councilor praised the officers for their dedicated service to the town. McCarthy had served the town as a patrolman and detective for about 12 years; Ingersoll, for almost five.
“It’s hard to see them go because I know it brings a lot of strain on the department,” Councilor John Raymond said in reference to the Police Department being down two officers from its normal complement of nine.
Ingersoll hadn’t been on duty since some point in September and town officials have declined to say whether he was on paid leave of some sort or was unpaid. Ingersoll and McCarthy are the only town officers not working at the moment. At full strength, the department has two sergeants, two detectives, four patrol officers and a chief.
Conlogue praised McCarthy for his cool-headed, by-the-book approach to police work. He recalled one incident many years ago in which McCarthy, while still very young on the job, waited for backup and set a cordon with several other officers — rather than just charging into a dangerous situation blindly — before attempting to capture a gunman who already had shot at someone else.
Councilor Jimmy Busque thanked both men for their service to the town, as did council Chairman Scott Gonya. “Our officers deal with an awful lot of front-line problems,” Gonya said.
Gonya polled the council informally about whether councilors preferred to see the department remain at nine officers or perhaps leave the positions open. Councilors said that, facing many budgetary uncertainties, it might be wiser to wait to fill the positions. But they agreed that the department should have nine officers. Filling in for missing officers with overtime isn’t very cost-effective and protecting residents against crime should be among the council’s top priorities, they said.
The council also agreed to meet with Police Chief Donald Bolduc in executive session on Nov. 24 for a “confidential briefing on the status of the department, including a summary of its significant cases that are in progress,” Conlogue said.
The council also agreed to have Gonya continue as chairman and welcomed new member Steve Campbell to a one-year term on the Town Council and incumbent Councilor Busque and former council Chairman John Davis to three-year terms.
Busque and Davis were elected last week with 1,637 and 1,360 votes, respectively, in uncontested races. With 1,357 votes, Campbell defeated Peter Walsh, who received 653 votes.
Councilors also voted 7-0 on a resolve honoring Councilor James Mingo for his service to the council. Mingo elected not to run for re-election.