President Joe Biden's point man on labor issues blocked the release of documents related to a major union officer accused of sexual abuse, according to the Boston Globe, which attempted to obtain the records through public records requests.
Labor Secretary Marty Walsh's mayoral administration in Boston overruled a public records supervisor and stonewalled a Boston Globe investigation into an alleged pedophile in the ranks of the city police department. The files, released by Walsh's successor on April 20, revealed that a major Boston police union had threatened to file a grievance on behalf of a former police union president who was the subject of an internal affairs investigation into allegations he sexually assaulted a minor.
Acting Boston mayor Kim Janey, who took office in mid-March after Walsh was confirmed as labor secretary, authorized the release of the documents to the public after Walsh's administration refused to release them. The city released 13 pages of the 105-page internal affairs report. Walsh's administration said that it would never release the files because of concerns for the victim's identity.
"When members of law enforcement violate their sacred duty to protect and serve the community, we have no choice but to expose their misconduct and attempt to rebuild trust," Janey said in a statement. "We are providing as much information to the public as possible about the circumstances surrounding the internal affairs investigation and how leadership at the time responded to the findings."
The White House did not respond to a request for comment on the situation. Both Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris called for Trump to fire then-labor secretary Alexander Acosta, citing his involvement as a federal prosecutor in a federal settlement with convicted millionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein. Acosta resigned from the Department of Labor after he became embroiled in the underage abuse scandal.
Janey's statement also detailed how officer Patrick Rose was "allowed to have contact with young victims of sexual assault during the course of his career, and we now know that he allegedly went on to assault several other children." Rose was able to return to duty two years after an internal affairs investigation and eventually became head of the police union.
The Boston Police Department referred a request for comment to the Boston mayor's office, which did not respond to a request seeking further comment on the Walsh administration's decision to block the release of the files. Walsh, in a roundtable discussion Tuesday afternoon, did not address a pre-submitted question from the Washington Free Beacon concerning the incident. The Department of Labor also did not return a message seeking comment.
The Boston Globe reported that the paper attempted to obtain the records relating to Rose's case in October 2020. Walsh's administration refused to release the files, citing a law protecting the identities of victims of sexual violence. In a March 5 letter to the Globe, a Walsh spokesman said the records could not be sufficiently redacted and the records would never be released. A city records official had asked Walsh's administration for a fuller explanation of why it refused to release the files.
Janey's reversal came less than one month after Walsh was confirmed as Labor Department secretary.