Millinocket town councilors will consider firing the town manager at a Thursday afternoon meeting, according to municipal documents.
Town Manager Harold “John” Davis has been under fire in recent months over the hiring of police chief Craig Worster in 2019 and accusations that Worster has created a hostile work environment in his time leading the Millinocket Police Department.
Deputy Chief Janet Theriault filed an 85-page complaint earlier this year alleging that Worster had bullied, harassed and behaved abusively toward suspects and community members. In the complaint written by an attorney, she also alleged that Worster was responsible for numerous instances of sexual harassment and using Millinocket Police Department resources to eavesdrop on town employees illegally.
She was unable to return to work after Worster allegedly treated her abusively in public earlier this year on Feb. 3. That instance, according to the complaint, was the latest in a series of similar incidents with the chief.
In July, the local chapter of the police union representing Theriault wrote to Millinocket town councilors, asking them to examine whether what the union called Davis’ failure to appropriately handle the “serious misconduct allegations” made against Worster was cause for the manager’s termination.
The letter, from Lorne Smith, secretary-treasurer of Teamsters Local Union No. 340, also said that Davis had not vetted Worster properly before hiring him in April 2019, and had “failed to address glaring issues about his employment history,”
Four years before being hired as the Millinocket Police Chief, Worster was placed on administrative leave from his job at the Ridgefield Police Department in Connecticut, according to a document that details an internal affairs investigation that the police department conducted.
The investigation found that Worster had consciously chosen to harass certain female employees and that his actions constituted a “pattern of hostile and abusive behavior.” Those actions, according to the investigation, created a hostile work environment. They included telling “sex-oriented stories,” displaying sexually explicit material and engaging in unwelcome physical contact.
From 2016 to 2018, Worster worked for the Wiscasset Police Department in Maine. According to the letter the police union sent to Millinocket town councilors, Worster had also been the subject of disciplinary action in Wiscasset before he eventually resigned.
Millinocket Town Councilor Michael Madore said Wednesday he could not comment on the matter.