Judge releases suspended Springfield police officer accused of assaulting woman

  • Dushaine K. Goffe, 36, of Hatfield, was released but ordered to stay out of Northampton, Hadley and Amherst following a dangerousness hearing Friday in Northampton District Court. Goffe, who has been suspended by the Springfield Police Department, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, strangulation or suffocation and malicious damage to a motor vehicle. GAZETTE STAFF/EMILY CUTTS

  • Springfield police officer Dushaine K. Goffe, charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, strangulation or suffocation and malicious damage to a motor vehicle, is shown Friday in Northampton District Court for a dangerousness hearing. THE REPUBLICAN/DAVE ROBACK

  • Defense attorney Marlene Morin and prosecutor Robert Opsitnik look over documents in Northampton District Court on Friday during Dushaine K. Goffe's dangerousness hearing. (Dave Roback / The Republican) —DAVE ROBACK

  • Judge W. Michael Goggins speaks in Northampton District Court on Friday during Dushaine K. Goffe's dangerousness hearing. (Dave Roback / The Republican) —DAVE ROBACK

  • Springfield police officer Dushaine K. Goffe, charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, strangulation or suffocation and malicious damage to a motor vehicle, is pictured in Northampton District Court Friday for a dangerousness hearing.  (Dave Roback / The Republican) —DAVE ROBACK

  • —DAVE ROBACK —DAVE ROBACK

@ecutts_HG
Published: 12/29/2017 1:37:19 PM

NORTHAMPTON — A Springfield police officer who allegedly assaulted a woman while off-duty this week was released Friday and ordered to stay out of Northampton, Hadley and Amherst while his case is pending.

Judge W. Michael Goggins rejected Assistant Northwestern District Attorney Robert Opsitnick’s request to find Dushaine K. Goffe dangerous and hold him without right to bail.

Instead, Goggins ordered that Goffe be released on conditions that he live with his uncle in Springfield, be placed on GPS monitoring, abide by a restraining order obtained by the alleged victim in the case and stay out of Northampton, except for court appearances, as well as Hadley and Amherst — the towns where the woman lives and works.

Goffe, 36, of Hatfield, pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Northampton District Court to charges of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (cellphone), strangulation or suffocation and malicious damage to a motor vehicle. He had been held without right to bail pending Friday’s hearing.

Northampton Police received a report of a disturbance at Meadowbrook Apartments on Bridge Road just before 2:30 a.m. Tuesday. The incident was alleged to have begun at a bar in downtown Northampton where the two had drinks before Goffe allegedly followed her to a gas station in Florence and then to a friend’s apartment. During that time, Goffe is alleged to have thrown a phone at her throat, choked her and broke off her car’s side-view mirror.

Police reports included in court documents indicate the incident was a domestic assault but there were no charges filed of that nature. The Gazette generally does not identify alleged victims of domestic assault.

The alleged victim and two of her friends testified during the hearing. The woman said she hadn’t gone to police in the past for other incidents because Goffe was a cop and told her he could ruin her life.

“I was scared he would just get away with it,” she said. “That they wouldn’t take me serious.”

The woman told Goggins she would not feel safe if Goffe was released, noting that he has previously shown up at her job and has also stopped her out in the community while he was on duty.

Speaking in defense of Goffe, one of his former girlfriends and a woman who said she was a longtime friend both testified that they had never seen him be violent or aggressive. His friend told the court she saw the alleged victim punching Goffe in the face and having to be restrained last summer. Goffe’s uncle also testified on his behalf.

Following Tuesday’s incident, the alleged victim told police Goffe had hit her in front of his friends and family, sprained her ankle and had “put countless bruises” on her face and body, according to court documents.

Before Friday’s hearing began, defense attorney Marlene Morin requested that Goffe’s presence be waived for the hearing. After a brief discussion of whether it was statutorily allowed, Goffe was brought into the courtroom in handcuffs and ankle shackles.

In arguing for his release, Morin told the court that Goffe had completed two periods of pretrial probation successfully which resulted in other cases, which she did not specify, being dismissed. Court records indicate that a charge of domestic assault and battery in Palmer District Court was continued without a finding.

Morin added that he has never violated a restraining order placed against him either. Court records indicate that Goffe has been the defendant in four restraining orders with two different people.

Morin told the judge there was no evidence Goffe was dangerous because there were no visible injuries or marks on the woman and there was no testimony that he hit her.

“Apparently she doesn’t like it that he follows her,” Morin said.

Goffe was suspended with pay Tuesday by Springfield Police, according to department spokesman Ryan Walsh. In court Friday, Morin said Goffe had been told he would remain suspended until the current case is resolved.

His next court appearance is scheduled for Feb. 8.

Emily Cutts can be reached at ecutts@gazettenet.com.


Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

115 Conz Street
Northampton, MA 01061
413-584-5000

 

Copyright © 2020 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy