By Emily Resnevic
Bruce Smith, a former Boston Police Department sergeant detective assigned to District E-13 in Jamaica Plain, was sentenced this month in federal court in Boston for repeatedly making false statements so that he could fly with a weapon on personal trips and enable a friend to fly with him without being screened by security personnel at Boston’s Logan International Airport, according to a press release.
Smith was first arrested and charged by a criminal complaint in June 2017. In September, Smith pled guilty to three counts of making false statements to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the Department of Homeland Security, and one count of unlawfully entering a secure airport area with intent to evade security requirements. Smith also agreed to resign from the Boston Police Department (BPD). On Jan. 17, Smith was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Leo T. Sorokin to one year of probation and ordered to pay a fine of $7,500.
Smith started working for BPD beginning in 1989. Between May 2011 and April 2017, he flew armed on approximately 28 separate trips departing from Logan Airport even though he was not on official business, which is a violation of federal law. On each trip, he claimed that he had obtained supervisor approval for his travel, which was not true.
On at least two of these trips, Smith escorted or attempted to escort a friend through Logan Airport without security screening by falsely claiming that his friend was a “dignitary” under Smith’s official police escort. When TSA questioned Smith about what type of dignitary his friend was, Smith falsely answered “I am not at liberty to divulge that information.” In reality, Smith’s friend was not a dignitary, and has a criminal record.
The investigation was conducted jointly by BPD’s Anti-Corruption Division and DHS-OIG. Assistant U.S. Attorney Zachary R. Hafer of Lelling’s Public Corruption and Special Prosecutions Unit prosecuted the case.