SANDOWN – Former Sandown Police Sergeant Scott Wood has filed suit against chief Joe Gordon over the chief’s listing of him on the state’s so called “Laurie List.”
But according to court documents at Rockingham Superior Court, Gordon placed his name on the list because he uncovered information that Wood was falsifying police records, namely creating false traffic stops to pad his statistics.
Officers on the Laurie List are considered to have credibility issues because of incidents in their police careers.
While the incidents are kept sealed, the list exists in the event that an officer must testify in court. It is so called because of a 1993 murder conviction, State vs. Laurie, which was overturned when the state Supreme Court determined state prosecutors failed to disclose evidence about a police officer who participated in the investigation and testified in court.
Both Gordon and Wood refrained from commenting on the current lawsuit.
Wood learned of his placement on the list when he recently went through the hiring process with the Chester Police Department. According to Wood, he lost that job because of his placement on the list and is seeking to remove his name so that he can continue work in the police field.
The lawsuit is in two parts, one seeking to get his name off the list and the second for defamation of character.
Wood was hired by the Sandown department in 2006, promoted to sergeant in 2008 and left in late 2012.
Previously he had spent 11 years with the Hampstead police department. In Sandown he was known for leading the Explorers post and organizing public outreach efforts for the department.
The New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office and the state Police Standards and Training Council are named as co-defendants in the suit.
While Wood and his attorney argue that he had no knowledge of his placement on the list, Gordon, through his attorney, states that Wood was made aware of the decision after an internal investigation uncovered falsified reports. While Gordon’s attorney states that Wood was made aware of the investigation and as a result left the department, Wood argues that he left the job of his own accord and it was not implied that he was being terminated due to results of the investigation.