A Massachusetts judge has dismissed a case against a state police trooper accused of performing a lewd act on himself while he was off duty during a summer concert at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro.
At an arraignment hearing at Wrentham District Court, the judge said the case against Massachusetts State Trooper Andrew Patterson was being dropped because no one was willing to testify against him.
The judge also cited Patterson's clean record and military service, but did point out that the trooper needs to get his drinking under control.
In-depth news coverage of the Greater Boston Area.
"There have been no witnesses to come forward, no videotapes, but he's been tried and convicted in the media. Well, today, the case was dismissed," Patterson's attorney Daniel Moynihan said outside court.
Patterson, 32, of Lynn, was suspended last month as state police conducted an internal investigation after a criminal complaint was filed after an alleged June 21 incident.
Police working a concert by country singer Luke Bryan at Gillette Stadium were called to a section of the arena for a fight. When they arrived, a man told police he had been punched by Patterson, according to the police complaint.
The man and his girlfriend, who had been sitting next to Patterson, said the trooper and his friend had been acting inappropriately throughout the night and at one point Patterson sat in one of their seats, according to the complaint. When asked to move, Patterson allegedly motioned for one of the victims to sit in his lap.
The couple told police that Patterson then unzipped his pants and began to perform a lewd act on himself. It was then that Patterson's friend left the area and the fight occurred between Patterson and the male victim, the complaint said.
While talking to Patterson about the incident, police said he appeared "extremely intoxicated and his speech was thick and slurred."
Outside court, Patterson called the accusations "whole-heartedly false," and said as a result he has suffered severe consequences.
"My family has been harassed, my career has been tarnished and my source of income and health care has been removed," he said.
State police had initially suspended Patterson without pay pending the outcome of the case. They said Friday that their investigation remains ongoing and he remains suspended without pay.
Patterson was involved in the fatal shooting of a knife-wielding man in Boston on June 19, 2015. Following a two-year investigation, he was cleared of wrong-doing and the Suffolk County District Attorney's office determined that Patterson acted in self defense.