LYNN (CBS) – A Massachusetts State Trooper was arrested Friday after authorities say he was caught with a prostitute and then tried to run down a police officer while trying to escape.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Bernice Corpuz reports.
Trooper Efrain Montanez, 50, of Salem, was off-duty at the time of the incident in a department-issued unmarked pickup truck. He has been suspended without pay indefinitely.
WBZ-TV’s Paul Burton reports
Lynn police say they began following Montanez after they saw him pick up a prostitute in his truck early Friday morning in a parking lot between Union and Blake Streets, near Central Square.
When the pickup stopped on Suffolk Street, officers approached it and found Montanez and 23-year-old Katelyn Pumphret engaged in a sex act inside, investigators said.
“After an officer displayed his badge, Montanez put the truck in reverse and then accelerated forward to get away. As he did so, one of the Lynn officers had to put his hands on the truck and push himself away to avoid getting hit,” State Police said in a statement.
Lynn police went after the pickup and moments later, at the intersection of Washington and Broad Streets, Pumphret got out.
Officers say Montanez then ran a stop sign before he finally pulled over on Lynn Shore Drive and was arrested.
He’s charged with unnatural acts, assault with a dangerous weapon, failure to stop for police, and a stop sign violation.
Pumphret is also charged with unnatural acts and being a common streetwalker.
Montanez, a 27-year veteran of the force, was stripped of his badge and gun and relieved of his duties by two State Police commanders at the Lynn Police Station.
He will be arraigned Friday in Lynn District Court.
State Police issued a scathing statement after the arrest was announced.
“The actions of Montanez as alleged in the Lynn Police report are an outrageous breach of duty and a violation of the public trust. Montanez’s behavior, as alleged, is an utter embarrassment to the Department and the overwhelming majority of troopers who wear the badge with integrity and honor. The Department has no tolerance for such conduct and will take appropriate action.”
“We are grateful that no Lynn Police officer suffered serious injury and we thank the Lynn officers for their restraint in last night’s incident.”
State Police Colonel Mary McGovern also released a statement:
“Plainly speaking, the allegations in each case are disturbing. These cases will be handled externally in the Judicial System and internally with the State Police,” Colonel McGovern said. “Please know that my support and admiration for the men and women of this job has never been stronger. I know that you are hard-working, dedicated individuals of integrity, committed to public safety, and as troubled as I am by the blemish on our reputation … As your colonel, I assure you we will address these issues and restore the public trust.”
Montanez was currently assigned to the gang unit.