Though many thought the criminal case with former School Committee member Michael Ciarlone had found its way quietly to a resolution, this month it has taken on a new life.
Chelsea Police arrested Ciarlone – who is currently an employee of the School Department and is on leave without pay – at the end of January for defaulting on a court appearance, and the situation will likely lead to a revisiting of charges that were pretty much wiped away last October.
Ciarlone’s case was revisited, according to court records, because he failed a drug test, failed to pay back his victim and did not attend a mandatory drunk driving class – all three of which were part of a probation term.
“If a defendant violates the probationary terms set at a continuation without a finding, the Probation Department may move to surrender him – which could result in incarceration,” wrote District Attorney Dan Conley’s spokesman, Jake Wark, in an e-mail. “Given the facts of the underlying case and the new allegations, we would support those efforts and assist in any way possible.”
Ciarlone’s case originated in January 2011 when he was alleged to have run over a neighbor purposefully with his School Department-issued City vehicle during an altercation over a parking space.
Ciarlone also was intoxicated during the time of the incident and assaulted another man as well.
The wild incident was witnessed by a couple of other neighbors, and Ciarlone’s driver’s license had been expired for nearly two years when the incident happened.
According to court records, last October Ciarlone cut a deal whereby all of the numerous felony charges were dropped and he pleaded guilty to two misdemeanors – the Operating Under the Influence of Alcohol (1st Offense) and a misdemeanor assault and battery charge.
By avoiding the felony charges, Ciarlone was allowed to keep his City pension. Also, his case was continued without a finding, meaning that if he stayed out of trouble for one year, all of the misdemeanor charges would be completely dismissed.
Ciarlone’s attorney, Gerry D’Ambrosio, said he didn’t know about the new charges against Ciarlone, but said that the conclusion of the case last fall resulted in a continuation.
“It was basically a slap on the wrist for a first offense,” said D’Ambrosio. “The case was continued without a finding and the court agreed to dismiss all the felony charges with the condition he stay out of trouble for a year.”
According to Chelsea Police records, Ciarlone was arrested on Jan. 25th when he showed up at the Chelsea Police Station for a meeting with his probation officer. At that time, the warrants were discovered and he was arrested. The warrants had issued due to the fact that Ciarlone had failed to appear at a court hearing regarding the three three violations of his probation.
School Superintendent Paul Dakin told the Journal that Ciarlone is still on leave without pay from his job as a Facilities Manager.
“I don’t think he’ll be back at this time,” said Dakin. “The budget has been created without a second position in that department. We’ll go forward with only one position, and that position is filled.”