Edward T. Gignoux United States Courthouse in Portland. Credit: Troy R. Bennett | BDN

A Hollis man who said a Biddeford police officer sexually assaulted him as a teenager has agreed to drop his case against the city and its longtime police chief.

Bertrand Girard has not dropped his lawsuit against the former officer, Stephen Dodd, who he accused in a 2016 complaint of sexual assault over two decades starting in 1977, including a five-year period in which Girard was a minor.

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Girard said Dodd befriended him as a teenager after his parents’ divorce, gave him alcohol as a teenager and sexually assaulted him. He said the abuse continued into the late 1990s.

Dodd issued a blanket denial to Girard’s allegations in court.

Three lawsuits by other alleged victims of sex assault by Biddeford police — one alleging assault by Dodd and two alleging asssault by another officer — continue to name the city and longtime Police Chief Roger Beaupre as defendants, arguing they knew or should have known about the officers’ alleged crimes.

[New sexual abuse allegations arise against former Biddeford cop]

Dodd reportedly acknowledged a sexual relationship with a second alleged victim, but said it was consensual.

In a joint statement released Monday, the city of Biddeford and Beaupre said they “have maintained from the beginning” that they “conducted themselves appropriately and in accordance with the law at all times.”

“We’re dedicated to preventing crimes and doing our part in prosecuting those who commit crimes,” the joint statement read, in part.

Dodd was never charged with a crime in relation to the Biddeford allegations.

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Attorney Walter McKee represents the other three alleged victims in their lawsuits against the officers, city and police chief.

In a statement Monday, McKee said that in Girard’s case, the statute of limitations on the crimes passed, limiting his ability to press ahead with some of his claims.

“The other three plaintiffs here do not have the same problem: all of their claims were filed before the statute of limitations had passed. And all three have evidence that Chief Beaupre knew or should have known” about the abuse, McKee said. “For the city to declare Bert Girard’s agreement to dismiss his case as some sort of victory is rich. Bert Girard was abused too long ago for the law to allow him to continue his lawsuit. If that’s a victory then I guess it is a pretty low bar.”

Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.