Nashua-based Attorney Rusty Chadwick confirmed today that he told witnesses to cooperate in the Attorney General's Office investigation of his client, Windham Selectman Ross McLeod.
Chadwick said that he could not specifically comment on the email allegedly sent by McLeod that was referenced in a court affidavit today. According to the AG's lead investigator – Allison P. Vachon – McLeod told witnesses in that email not to respond if they were contacted by any investigators.
That brought about a search warrant for what court documents referred to as "evidence of the crime of tampering with witnesses and informants."
Vachon learned of that email in a phone conversation with one of the witnesses, but found no evidence of the email on McLeod's personal Comcast account.
Those witnesses are specifically referenced as members of McLeod's fantasy football league, and all correspond by email. The investigation was brought about by allegations that McLeod was partaking in illegal gambling with the league.
Chadwick said that the investigation is in the "very preliminary stages." at this time.
"I think that words are often times subject to different interpretations," Chadwick said, "and I believe the AG in its affidavit noted in particular that they have Ross' email but at the same time what was put in the affidavit was what we did (asking for cooperation)."
Chadwick still asserted, as he as in the past, that the entire investigation is simply "local town politics at its worst."
He called the investigation "trumped up," saying that it has gone on for months with no evidence of illegal gambling by McLeod.
"I am very much concerned with Ross' reputation," Chadwick said. "He has already lost his job at the (Hillsborough) County Attorney's office and it's a sham that this continues to go on."
Chadwick added that he is "strongly aware" that people are seeking McLeod's resignation or suggesting it.
"The last time I checked the constitution was still in effect in this country and people are presumed to be innocent until proven guilty," Chadwick said.
Board of Selectman Chair Bruce Breton called for McLeod's resignation this afternoon, calling McLeod's matters that he currently faces a "distraction" from his work on the board.
"He should take care of the matters that are in front of him," Breton said.