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Back to School Safety Tips

CONCORD Police Recommend Safety Tips – Another academic year is right around the corner! Chief Joseph O’Connor and the Concord Police Department would like to offer several back to school safety tips for parents and guardians prior to the start of classes. Students at Concord-Carlisle Regional High School will start on Aug. 31. Kindergartners through eighth grade will return to the Concord Public Schools on Sept. 1.

Chief O’Connor suggests that parents follow safety procedures outlined by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) to prevent accidents this school season. DPH reports that approximately 400,000 students in the state are transported to school by buses every year. While school bus travel is generally very safe, the majority of related injuries occur when boarding or exiting a bus because of passing traffic or due to walking in one of the bus driver’s blind spots. To help students stay safe, parents should:
• Educate children on safe bus riding and walking behaviors when getting on and off the bus.
• Teach young children to take five giant steps (10 feet) in front of the bus and to wait for the driver’s signal before crossing.
• Develop appropriate bus pick-up/drop-off policies.
• Closely supervise children under age 10 who must cross the street after exiting the bus.

The fine for illegally passing a school bus is a maximum of $200, and repeat offenders may have their licenses suspended. Concord Police will be on patrol looking for drivers who follow school buses too closely or illegally pass the vehicles. “While we want to do everything we can to help students board and exit the school bus safely and cross the street without issue, we also need drivers to be extra cautious while in a school zone or in the vicinity of a school bus,” Chief O’Connor said. “Please obey the rules of the road.”

Additionally, before sending your child off to school in the morning, Concord Police recommend checking backpacks to make sure they are a tolerable weight. The American Chiropractic Association advises that backpacks should weigh no more than 10 percent of a student’s body weight, as heavy pressure can negatively affect the skeletal and muscular development in children. If walking to school, or when exiting the bus, parents and guardians should educate students about safely crossing the street. DPH reports that pedestrian injuries are the second leading cause of unintentional injury death among school-aged children 5 to 18 years old. Most injuries to children in kindergarten through third grade occur when they run into the street mid-block, while older students are most often hurt at intersections. To prevent potential tragedies, children should
• Be aware of pedestrian hazards and how to avoid them
• Know traffic signs and signals, and safe walking zones
• Wait for the “walk” signal at a crosswalk, or for a crossing guard to signal the OK to proceed into the street

Concord Middlesex Drug Take Back Program (2).jpg


Marian T. Ryan

District Attorney




 For Immediate Release:  February 6, 2015
Woman Pleads Guilty To Forging More Than $229,000 Worth Of Checks


WOBURN – Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan has announced that a woman has pled guilty in connection with stealing blank checks from a household where she worked, forging names on the checks, and cashing them in order to collect more than $229,000.

Nilce Coffey, 61, of Acton, pled guilty in Middlesex Superior Court to charges of  larceny over $250 from a person over 60 years of age, forgery, and trespassing.  Judge Thomas Billings sentenced Coffey to 3 years in state prison followed by 5 years probation, with restitution to be determined and a condition that Coffey submit to an evaluation and follow any recommended treatment guidelines.

“Nilce Coffey preyed on the kindness of a senior citizen,” said District Attorney Ryan.  “While she was a housekeeper, she secretly took blank checks from the home, forged signatures on them, and cashed them to get money.  When the homeowner gave her a chance to turn her life around and he didn’t press charges, she victimized him again.  Coffey snuck into the home and stole more blank checks.  Shame on her for continuing to prey on this man’s good heart and shame on anyone who would take advantage of the trust placed in them by a senior citizen.”

“The successful resolution of this case is another example of the strong partnership that exists between the Concord Police Department and the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office,” said Concord Police Chief Joseph O'Connor.  “Detective Sergeant Joseph Morahan and the District Attorney’s Office conducted a thorough investigation and presented evidence  which resulted in Nilce Coffey being held accountable for her crimes.”     

Evidence gathered during the investigation showed that in April of 2009, Coffey forged a check taken from a residence where she worked as a housekeeper.  Coffey was confronted and admitted to forging a signature in order to cash the check for $6,000.  The employer decided not to press charges and Coffey was released from his employment.

Authorities say several years later, the alarm system in the home went off on September 5, 2013.  The security company called the residence and the person who answered the phone could not provide a password.  Police were sent to the property and found the intruder gone.  The security company provided a recording of the phone conversation and the family identified the voice as belonging to Coffey.

Later, in October of 2013, the family reported to law enforcement that numerous checks had been drawn from the household’s bank account and that they were forged and cashed.  The amount of the checks ranged from $28 to $25,000.  The total amount of the 44 checks that were forged and cashed was $229,892.58.  One month later, police executed a search warrant at Coffey’s home, found checks belonging to the family that was victimized, and Coffey was arrested.

District Attorney Ryan says this case should serve as a reminder to senior citizens and to family members about the importance of regularly checking bank statements and other financial documents.  Before assuming the position as District Attorney, Ryan served as Chief of the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office’s Elder and Disabled Unit, where she prosecuted a myriad of crimes involving financial abuse and physical abuse of the most vulnerable victims.  In that role, Ryan collaborated with business and community leaders to conduct risk assessments and develop prevention plans for elders and disabled citizens.  Ryan continues to host seminars in community settings to provide advice to residents about how to protect themselves.  Some information provided at these forums by Ryan includes reminding people that, “If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.” 

For example, if someone offers to take over the task of paying your bills for you, make sure that person can be trusted and check financial statements regularly.  In addition, be skeptical if you receive a phone call or letter claiming you will get money for providing your social security number or personal information.  Ryan says the age-old safety precautions still apply in these modern times: lock your front door, never give personal information to strangers, and don’t allow people into your home even if they say they have an emergency and need to use your phone. Finally, Ryan says if you think you have been a victim of a scam, speak up, and tell someone in authority. 

The prosecutor assigned to this case is Assistant District Attorney Doug Nagengast. The Victim Witness Advocate is Lori Riccio.

Concord Police Department
On-Line Crash Reports

        As a service to our residents and the business community, Concord Police Department is proud to announce a partnership with  to provide online access to all Concord Massachusetts crash reports.    All crash reports will be available 72 hours after the crash occurs (or sooner if completed) except for fatal crashes and crashes under investigation.  Fatal crash reports must be purchased at the Concord Police Department.

        All requests from businesses for Concord Massachusetts crash reports will be referred to   Concord Police will not provide crash reports to businesses unless a specific crash report cannot be located on the website, or is a walk-in public records request.

Follow the below instructions to locate a report:

> Go to and click on the State of Massachusetts
> Enter Search Values in Box B: (report number, person name or town name)
> Enter optional Date Range in Box C
   > Click the Next Step button
  > Click the Add to Cart check box for the desired report and click the Next Step button
> Fill in the credit card information and click the Place Order Now button
  > Click Download Crash Report button to view your report

Concord Police Department Emergency Notification System

The Concord Police Department has partnered with Emergency Communications Network to license its CodeRED high-speed notification solution to create a Concord Police Department Emergency Notification System. The CodeRED System provides Concord Police Department with the ability to quickly deliver personalized messages via voice, email, phone text and TDD/TTY capabilities to targeted areas or the entire Town of Concord in minutes.

Such systems are only as good as the telephone number database supporting them. "If your phone number is not in the database, you will not be called." One of the reasons the CodeRED system was selected is that it gives individuals and businesses the ability to add their own phone numbers directly into the system's data base, which is an extremely important feature.

No one should automatically assume his or her phone number is included all individuals and businesses to log onto the Town of Concord's website,, and follow the link to the Concord Police Department’s home page. From there, there will be information about the Concord Police Department Emergency Notification System and a link to the form that can be filled out. Anyone without Internet access may call the Concord Police Department at 978-318-3400 to supply their information over the phone. Required information includes first and last name, street address (physical address, no P.O. boxes), city, state, zip code, and primary phone number.  Additional phone numbers can be entered as well.

All businesses should register, as well as all individuals who have unlisted phone numbers, and those who have changed their phone number or address within the past year or who use a cellular phone or VoIP phone as their primary number.

The Concord Police Department Emergency Notification System allows geographically based delivery, which means street addresses are required to ensure emergency notification calls are received by the proper individuals in a given situation. The system works for cell phones too, but we need to have an associated street address to provide relevant messages."

The Concord Police Department Emergency Notification System gives those who want to be included an easy and secure method for inputting information. The data collected will only be used for emergency notification purposes." Questions should be directed to the Concord Police Department, Detective James Forten at 978-318-3420 or email





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