Wednesday, February 26, 2014
NORTHAMPTON — When Northampton Police Lt. Dorothy Clayton officially steps into her new role as captain next month, it will be the latest in a series of firsts for her.
Clayton’s promotion makes her the first female police captain in Northampton. She was also the department’s first female lieutenant and its first female sergeant, according to Northampton Police Capt. Joseph Koncas.
“She’s a real star,” Koncas said.
Clayton said Thursday she hopes her promotion to captain will bring some stability back to the department.
Clayton, 52, a 30-year veteran of the department, officially becomes captain March 2, taking over the post formerly held by Scott A. Savino, who stepped down in December in the wake of a time-card-fixing investigation involving administrative aide Maryann Keating.
Northampton police also announced two other promotions — Staff Sgt. Craig Kirouac to patrol lieutenant and Officer Greg Korepta to sergeant.
As lieutenant, Clayton has been handling the department’s domestic violence response trainings. Clayton said she looks forward to a new challenge, but added that she will take some time to get comfortable before making any changes.
“After 30 years, I don’t mind moving into a more administrative position,” she said. “Before thinking of changing anything, there’s a lot to learn.”
In her three decades on the force, Clayton said she has seen a rise in both the homeless population in the city and drug use overall. But she has also seen the department take on more responsibility handling domestic violence calls, including establishing the Domestic Violence Intervention Project, which, among other things, puts victims in touch with advocates and support services.
“I just want to learn the job and do it to the best of my ability,” Clayton said.
Kirouac has served with the department for 21 years and was the initial lead detective investigating the arsons of December 2009 that killed two and eventually led to Anthony Baye pleading guilty to multiple charges related to those crimes last year.
Korepta, an eight-year veteran of Northampton Police, is a certified field training officer and sexual assault investigator and is “a leading enforcer of the driving while impaired laws on the evening shift,” according to the department.
Part of that duty includes calibrating and maintaining the department’s chemical breath-testing equipment.
All promotions will be effective March 2. Details of a formal promotion ceremony will be released soon, according to a statement from the department.
Bob Dunn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.