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PAWTUCKET â€” Following a trial that concluded on Friday in Providence's District Court, Pawtucket police officer Nichalas Laprade was found guilty of one count of indecent exposure/disorderly conduct related to an incident on I-95 last November.
According to the Attorney General's Office, Laprade received a one-year filing on the misdemeanor charge, which essentially means that if he stays out of further legal trouble for one year, the conviction will be dropped from his record.
Laprade was accused by two women of engaging in lewd behavior while he drove beside their vehicle in the early morning hours of Nov. 9, 2010. The women had testified that he had pulled alongside them in a red pick-up truck, and with the vehicle's dome light on, had exposed his private parts and appeared to be engaging in a sexual act while watching them. They said he had appeared to stay parallel to their car as it continued along Route 95 and then to Route 6 westbound.
The women drove to the Rhode Island State Police Lincoln Barracks to report the incident and Laprade was later arrested and charged with the misdemeanor by the State Police.
Laprade had blamed his actions on discomfort caused by a recent hernia operation and said he had just been trying to urinate into an empty bottle that he had in his truck. He said he had exposed himself while trying to urinate but denied committing a lewd act against the other motorist.
Laprade, 29, of Johnston, was also one of two Pawtucket officers who were caught last August napping in a city police cruiser by a citizen who videotaped the scene and submitted the footage to the local news media. He was given an unspecified sanction for this behavior, according to the Pawtucket Police Depart-ment.
Laprade, who was hired as a Pawtucket police officer on Dec. 3, 2007, had received several merit awards for his police work last May, however.
Police Major Arthur Martins said on Friday that Laprade remains suspended with pay pending a further discussion with Police Chief Paul King and Mayor Donald Grebien. He said a meeting to discuss his status has been scheduled for early next week.