This article, a handwritten letter to the Union Leader by Eric Cable who is currently incarcerated, was typed up and shared via CopBlock.org’s submit page by a friend of his.
Date of Interaction: 7/14/2012
Police Employees Involved: Sgt. Dirth, Officer Allie, Rockingham County Prosecutors
Police Employee Contact Information: 603) 293-2037, firstname.lastname@example.org
My name is Eric Cable and this was written prior to my sentencing hearing in which I was sentenced to five to twelve years, which I consider excessive given the circumstances. I hope that after reading this you will understand why I feel this way.
I know you are a very good and decent and not to mention unbiased reporter for the Union Leader. I am also well aware that you’ve closely followed my case. I’m writing to you to shed light and to expose a few things that were failed to be addressed through this trial. Some you may be aware of, some you may not. First, just a little about me, so you know me as a man of good honest character and not the monster the prosecuting D.A. made me out to be. I am a college graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Business and also a minor in philosophy. I have worked two jobs and sometimes three for nearly ten years. Over the last five years I’ve joined the Freemasons, the orders of Bektash Shrine and Scottish Rite masons. To be a brother of these prestigious organizations, you have to be an honest and honorable man of good report. You go through an interview and background check process first. Over the last five years, I have donated countless hours to my local community to raise money for the Shrine hospital for children, and the Scottish Rite charity funds for dyslexic children.
What happened on July 14th, 2012 was a horrible, inexcusable, tragic accident. Brendan Yerry was my best friend. I will forever live that day and feel the burden of losing him right before my eyes. I will live the nightmare of panicking and searching and diving for his life, and coming up empty. You can’t explain that kind of experience to anyone and hope they understand. Unless you’ve lived it, you never will. Now, on to the facts and why I’m writing to you.
My charge was originally a DWI class A felony. The day of the accident, I gave a brief statement of what happened. I was still in shock and didn’t want to give a full description as I was more concerned about the ongoing search for Brendan. I was soon arrested and taken away. You already know why, and how, as you’ve followed my case since day one. I want you to remember a sentencing hearing about my unconstitutional blood draw. Sergeant Dirth, of Marine Patrol, told me in his own words, “You have no right to refuse.” He said this many times and backed up his statement with a felony blood draw form. I didn’t know that this is and was a clear violation of constitutional law. We challenged it and won. That is not what I’d like to call to your attention, though. Sgt. Dirth, under oath, repeatedly lied, claiming that he never said, “You have no right to refuse.” This was a lie, and the judge saw through this. Pointing this out may seem like nothing major. It is just me showing you an example of the many dishonest (under oath, even) character flaws, and lack of ethics and morals. That lie is nothing compared to the ones he told to Brendan’s grieving family and to Jackie Proulx in the fall of 2012, in the month of October. Keep in mind that I’ve showed you, and you witnessed that hearing where he lied, under oath.
One night in late October 2012, I realized I hadn’t heard from Jackie all that much lately. I texted her to see how she was holding up and if she was okay. She and I were great friends and were there for one another throughout our grieving. Brendan being my best friend, I did everything I could to help her in any way that I could. I raised $700 dollars for her to help pay rent, helped organize my friends to move her out of her apartment, took her to Red Sox games, a weekend to Berlin, had movie nights and even slept on her couch many nights so she wouldn’t have to be alone. This all changed that night in October 2012. After I texted her to see how she was doing, I got a very upset, distrustful response. She told me Sgt. Dirth was over the Yerry’s house and so was she. Apparently he wanted to update them all on his investigation. What she said was appalling. She told me that he told them all that the three of us (Nate, Andy, and I) were not cooperating, that he is disturbed by the “lack of information” we’ve provided, he felt we were hiding something, and that he doesn’t know what happened to Brendan (I have copies of the texts to prove it). Let me point something out that will bring relevance to the timeliness of Sgt. Dirth’s meeting. My felony DWI had been dropped that month. It was dropped to possibly investigate a negligent homicide charge. Double Jeopardy was in play, so prosecuting my DWI wouldn’t allow for Negligent Homicide. Now up until this point, Jackie and I were still close.
As far as I knew, the Yerry’s, although grieving and hurt, had no distrust for me, nor should they. I spoke with them twice offering my sympathy and condolences on the phone, offered to answer any questions, attended Brendan’s funeral, and wrote them a letter along with a check for $1000.00 dollars that we raised for the Brendan Walker Yerry Foundation. I did everything I could to help everyone and to ease the grieving the best way I could. Well, with the DWI being null processed, that opened the door for Sgt. Dirth. He knows all too well in a case like this, the best move for his career to get this charge accepted, is to have a grieving, angry, family that doesn’t trust the person who is being charged. That was clearly the purpose of that visit, and as you already know by witnessing him lie firsthand, this was another lie. I told you I gave a statement. It was brief but to the point. In the next 48 hours after the accident, Nate and Andy gave theirs. Their statements were full of descriptions of that day, including detailed descriptions of the accident as well as the effort to save Brendan’s life. Both of their statements were identical, and although they never saw mine or spoke with me after about any of it, all matched perfectly with my statement. Why? Because it was the truth. Officer Dirth claims I didn’t want to give him a detailed description of that day or a report.
When I went to the impound to retrieve my belongings off the boat, he asked me to answer questions. My step father was with me. He witnessed Sgt. Dirth ask me where everyone was sitting on the boat. Sgt. Dirth then said he could not speak with me if I had an attorney. I said I would like to answer, but I had an attorney. Sgt. Dirth then stopped the conversation and asked no more questions. Having an attorney “is” a constitutional right. I never heard from Sgt. Dirth again. I guess he didn’t need that statement anymore? This was in the third week of July. We are now in late October. Sgt. Dirth is making these claims and statements to the Yerry family. I checked with Nate and Andy immediately. I was very upset and wanted to know what Sgt. Dirth was talking about. Both Andy and Nathan say they have never met Sgt. Dirth. They told me they gave statements to other law enforcement officers in July and that was the last communication they had with any law enforcement. My question is, how can we be uncooperative if we weren’t asked in any way to cooperate? Officer Dirth not only had full statements from Andy and Nathan, he had my statement from that night, and my willingness to answer his questions (which he admitted) with my attorney present. Officer Dirth never contacted myself or any of the other people involved in 3 ½ months. He had the truth and our full cooperation. What he did that night was an unethical, immoral lie, and everything going forward from then in regards to the truth was based on his disregard to the feelings of Brendan’s family and loved ones. If he cared for them at all, he would have given them our statements and not deceived them about what he knew, our statements, or his failure to reach out to me after the last time we spoke in July.
Is this who we put our trust in? Someone who will lie to a grieving family about their loved ones to help bring a more serious charge against a person who loses his best friend, just to further his own career? The fact that this man lied to Brendan’s family with no remorse or care for their pain makes me sick to my stomach and always will. Who knows what else he has lied about or to whom. These are the types of officers who are put on the Laurie list and for good reason.
In early October 2012, Sgt. Dirth pulled another sneaky move. DMV law requires BAC tests in DWI cases to be submitted within 30 days. Sgt. Dirth failed to turn in my “unconstitutionally” collected BAC level to the DMV in time. He filed it after the 30 days. The state rejected it. Sgt. Dirth, angered by this, went against ethics once again and contacted the attorney’s office at the DMV. He asked the prosecuting attorney (whose name I have on record, and Dirth’s contact with him I have on file) asking if he could re-file and try to get my license suspended. This attorney told him to do so. Dirth then re-filed his motion to get my license suspended. I received a letter from the DMV that my license was suspended. This took me by surprise since I had received a notice a few weeks earlier that Dirth’s motion was denied. I contacted my attorney who investigated and found another one of Dirth’s unethical, dishonest law practices. We filed for a hearing for this matter. I never stepped into the courtroom when the judge ruled against Sgt. Dirth’s sneaky unethical tactic. Again, another reason why officers like this belong on the Laurie list. One more point I want to mention before I switch to Sgt. Dirth’s methods of upholding the law: In his investigation, and discovery I received after it concluded, his final comments were, “Eric remained polite and cooperative through all of our interactions.” That isn’t quite what he told the Yerry family, now is it? After his investigation is over he finalizes his discovery with my “polite cooperativeness,” how can that change? I’d say it was for the purposes of pushing an indictment by whatever means necessary.
Now let’s fast forward a year and a half to my trial, the week of December 19th.I believe I remember you sitting there during the prosecutor’s closing argument. The prosecutor compared a child running out into the street and being hit by a car to the accident I was involved in and claimed I was criminally liable. In fact, I did not hit anything. I was asked to drive, asked to turn, and given the O.K. to turn by Brendan. I failed to recognize the circumstances before it was too late. My friend, who was intoxicated as well, lost his balance mid turn when we went over some boat waves in the water. In Jerome’s analogy, the child never had a chance to move their position prior to any turn, or waves, because the child is not in this car. The child didn’t ask the driver to drive, turn, or give the O.K. after being checked upon for his readiness. The driver didn’t hit a natural obstacle (waves) in the road that caused the child to fall into the driver’s vehicle. In fact, that child would have never even had a chance. The child’s balance or his own decision making was not impaired by alcohol the way my friend’s may have been at the time of the accident. There are many other mistakes or human factors in my case than in Mr. Blanchard’s analogy. Is this who the public puts their trust in, who we pay to uphold the law? It would seem this analogy shows extreme negligence. Now, why would Jerome be so eager to prosecute my case and so inclined to pass up his fictional one? Well, let’s now rewind to October 2012.
After the aforementioned DMV hearing in October 2012, my then attorney Eric Wilson had a brief conversation with a Rockingham County attorney named Michael Zaino. The conversation was in regards to the status of the investigation and if he had a feeling of an indictment or any further charges. Mr. Zaino told Mr. Wilson that my case was “kicked around” and many D.A.’s and prosecutors saw this for what it was. A terrible, tragic accident among two best friends, not criminal negligence. My attorney relayed this conversation to me and I kept praying that I would face the DWI charge, and not be held criminally responsible in the eyes of the court. In my heart and soul, I’ll always feel guilt and pain over what happened. I know it was an accident and it’s something I’ll always have to live with no matter what.
Months passed. I heard nothing. I was told that nobody really wanted to prosecute my case, and that it was a very delicate case. Then, in spring 2013, I received an indictment – two of them, actually. Now, how did this happen after all I’ve been hearing and what I’ve been told? Are you familiar with the names Jim Reams and Tom Reid? I know you are, as I’ve read every article of yours regarding their untrustworthy, deceitful, dishonorable abuse of power and betrayal of public trust. Jim Reams was the lead D.A. on my case, along with Tom Reid. What does that have to do with anything? Well, Tom Reid resides in the area of Northwood Lake. Mr. Reid’s backyard is where the accident took place. There is conflict of interest, by law, here. Mr. Reid’s agenda to prosecute this accident because of its whereabouts and not necessarily for the facts is and should be exposed. Mr. Reams is under administrative suspension, pending the investigation into his abuse of power and corruptness. His sidekick Tom Reid, who last I knew was also under investigation by the F.B.I., has resigned. Both of these men are criminals. Both of them were heavily involved in my prosecution. Reams was seeing to it that the accident in Reid’s backyard was prosecuted. Crooked, deceitful, dishonest, power abusing D.A.s were at the reins of my case. Now, with these two power D.A.’s at the time, the bosses on my case, do you see why Mr. Blanchard wanted to prosecute my case and wouldn’t prosecute his so called “accident” story? Mr. Reid and Reams wanted to do so, and they wanted this swept under the rug. Mr. Blanchard was just the guy they needed, the guy who would play their game. If you think that’s all, you’re wrong. There’s even more to this story.
When I was first indicted in the spring of 2013, guess who was originally assigned as the prosecutor? Michael Zaino. Mr. Zaino was very approachable and willing to work with me and my legal team on the case. Before we even began to go over discovery and build a defense, Mr. Zaino offered me a plea bargain of one year in Rockingham County Dept. of Corrections. This was an extremely fair offer. He explained that he was going by case log from the Erica Blizzard case. In her case, she was at a much higher BAC level, was going faster than I was or could, and crashed head on into an island. The results were her best friend being ejected from the boat and dying from her injuries. She took her case to trial. She was found guilty of Class B Negligence. She received 6 months in county, and 6 months on house arrest. Mr. Zaino’s offer was very generous, but everyone knows you don’t accept initial offers without first conducting a defense investigation as well. To plead to a one year sentence when a woman whose crime was more extreme than mine, who took it to trial and lost, received less time, was unlikely. My attorney declined and expressed needing time to go over our defense and would like to pursue further negotiations with Mr. Zaino. Mr. Zaino understood completely. Mr. Zaino was also aware of some things that have been going on in this case. My attorney, on my request, relayed that no matter what plea, or outcome we agreed to, it was of the utmost importance to me that the Yerry family is and would be made aware of my full cooperation, and how hard all this is for me, despite what they had been told. Mr. Zaino wholeheartedly agreed with us that he would make sure they were informed. Getting them the truth was all that I cared about and was willing to work with the state as long as everything, including the truth of what happened to Brendan and how it happened was finally told to his grieving family.
Up to this point, they had been fed lies. My friend and his family deserve better. It is my duty to give that to them. Mr. Zaino understood my compassion and wasn’t afraid to do the right thing by law, and by Brendan and his family. Not long after this conversation, the corrupt dynamic duo of Reams and Reid got involved. They can’t have this getting out, now can they? Shortly after our negotiations with Mr. Zaino, he was “mysteriously re-assigned” to another part of the building or case. I really never got a straight answer. It seems all too convenient doesn’t it? Sweep this under the rug before it gets out of hand. Reams and Reid then assigned Jerome Blanchard to the case. He had their agendas in full view and was unwilling to negotiate further or to relay any of my feelings about what truly happened. He was either blind to it, or just didn’t know. With all the corruptness that surrounds my case, I’ll leave that up to you to decide. Mr. Jerome Blanchard was quite eager to take on Reid and Ream’s case against me to further his career.
Now let’s look to the future of my sentencing hearing and let me tell you what you’re probably going to hear, and why I’ve chosen to send you this letter after my hearing and not before. The reason I’m sending it after is to not affect my hearing at all. For better or worse, it is intended to expose this sort of corruption and help prevent it in the future.
My sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 13th, 2014. I think you’ll probably cover this story. I’ve been told Mr. Blanchard is going to seek a 5-10 year sentence for me, and my attorney is going to seek one similar to Erica Blizzard’s but with a little more jail time, as well as probation and community service. A sentence of 5-10 is excessive especially compared to the Blizzard case and from the state’s original offer. I declined this offer because I am a man with a heart. This trial meant everything to me in regards to the truth. I made it clear to my attorney that the truth of Brendan’s last few moments on earth, our cooperation and helpfulness, and the Yerry’s right to know the truth was my main focus. The trial was heartbreaking and very sad. It all could have been avoided had the authorities that we all put our trust in been honest from the start. There would have been no trial. I would have taken the year plea or less. The Yerry’s would have gotten closure. There would be no distrust. I took this to trial to do the only thing I knew would be right by all parties involved; Tell the truth, take responsibility and give my friend and his family the proper closure they all so greatly deserved. This was the only way. Should I be punished for doing the right thing? By giving the truth the only way it was ever going to be given? Should I be punished for exercising my constitutional right to a trial by jury? Why is the one year sentence offer no longer considered after trial? I did what any noble man in my position would do for his friend and family when they were failed by the authorities.
Speaking of authorities, there is one other officer I’d like to call to your attention: Officer Seth Allie of N.H. Marine Patrol. I’d like to bring him to your attention because of my sentencing hearing. After you are done reading this, you may consider him as another Laurie List candidate.
During my trial, Officer Allie testified that he had given my sobriety test wrong – just one part of it, the stand on one foot test. He had to correct himself mid-test while I was performing it. This caused me to have to do it twice. The second time was not successful for me. Now that is fine. The point I’m making is Mr. Allie’s memory skills. This is a procedure he trained in, that he gives regularly, one that he should know like the back of his hand. Yet, he still “forgot” how to administer the test. A temporary memory lapse, okay, we’re all human. Let’s move forward. Officer Allie then forgot to read me my Miranda rights, another one of those things that should easily be remembered. Now that’s two examples of memory lapse. Officer Allie is no doubt a decent guy and was a total gentleman during our interactions. I question his memory, and if you spent any time with him at all you’d understand why. After he arrested me, we went to the station, and then the hospital before returning to the station. Officer Allie warned me about Sgt. Dirth’s unethical behavior which came to me as a surprise. However, Dirth, being Allie’s boss did most of the booking and Allie had little to no part in the rest of the evening, nor did he speak with Dirth about the event outside of the sobriety testing. Allie followed Dirth around the booking area like a puppy dog until Dirth relieved him.
Over the next 48 hours or so, Officer Allie started to piece/put together his reports of the incident. He claims and put in his official report which I have in discovery that I told him what happened on the boat. He claims and reported I said I was turning the boat, Brendan fell out, and I didn’t know, one of the other men on the boat had to tell me. This would paint a picture of Brendan falling over the side of the boat, not the front. This would also suggest some sort of foul play. No surprise there, huh? I never had this conversation with Officer Allie. I would not have said this because this is not what happened. It does not match my statements to office Juneau earlier that night, nor does it match either man’s statements that were given the next day. Officer Allie clearly “misremembered” again. But this time it’s a lot bigger deal. If you do not know/remember what I said, or if it never happened, don’t give or make an official report based on what you thought you might have heard or what you may have remembered. Officers are put on the Laurie List, and justifiably so, for this sort of falsifying evidence – but it doesn’t end here for Officer Allie.
In October of 2012, I attended a snow machine rally in the Raymond area. Officer Allie also apparently did. It was brought to my attention that Officer Allie has given an official report and may testify at my sentencing hearing on what he “claims” to have witnessed that day while he was off duty. According to Allie, he was standing in a concession line, and witnessed me being extremely intoxicated and being helped to my feet by a friend of mine. He then claims to have witnessed me fall to the ground and start laughing. He said my friends were embarrassed and telling me to get up. He claims that based on his years of experience, I was clearly intoxicated. This is his official statement to the court and he may testify to that in a bid to get my sentence as harsh as they can. If this was true, and I was this man, then I would agree with what Allie saw and his statement, and his presumed testimony. However, it is not. This happened over a year and a half ago. We have already been over how fuzzy officer Allie’s memory can be with things that he memorizes, or is supposed to, and in things that happened in just 48 hours. How well do you think he remembers something that happened a year and a half ago? Let’s find out.
On the day of this event, I worked all morning. As soon as I got out of work, I drove to a friend’s house. They were all waiting to get up there as they were meeting some friends that were already there. I followed them up to Raymond. It took quite some time to get parked and walk the long distance to get to where everyone else was. I didn’t arrive until between the times of 1:00 PM and 2:00 PM. When we finally got to where everyone else was standing, I noticed that my friend Jesse was highly intoxicated. I had no alcoholic beverages at all to this point. Jesse offered me a beverage from his cooler. I asked if anyone was not drinking to make sure that I had a sober ride home if I decided to have any. My friend Tanya said she would drive my car back home, so I accepted Jesse’s offer. Not long after, Jesse was having a hard time standing up. I convinced him that he needed to slow down his drinking and get some food into his system and something other than alcohol to drink. I helped him around to get food as he stumbled. Not all that flattering, but something any friend would do for another. Allie claims he saw this and it was me. I have over half a dozen witnesses to the exact opposite. I left the snow machine rally roughly two hours after arriving. It would be impossible for me or anyone to get intoxicated to that level in such a short period of time without being noticed by the people surrounding them, as well as the security there.
Officer Allie’s legal statement of what he “misremembers” stands as a means to get me punished with a strict sentencing. Tanya, from what I understand, was asked by my attorney to give a statement to the truth of that day and was asked to speak as well. She SHOULDN’T HAVE HAD TO. She shouldn’t have had to be involved. It is clear Allie doesn’t remember, saw someone he thought was me, or is just manipulating the facts intentionally to incriminate me. I’ll leave that up to you to decide. My point is that officers should not make official reports, or testimony on things they don’t remember, manipulate, or just piece together. If you don’t know something or remember, don’t claim to. It’s a clear attempt to incriminate me. Why else would this even be brought up? Falsifying reports or testimony in court is a criminal offense. In this case, making something up should be seen as one if not both of the above. If Officer Allie has done this, as many times in my case, how many others has he done this in, and how many more will he be willing to do the same thing to in the future? These are people’s lives he is affecting. What if I got a five year sentence instead of a three year sentence because of his false recollection and testimony? What if this was what happened to others? Or if it will happen to others in the future? This needs to stop. A step closer to cleaning this up and stopping this man from doing this again is to consider the Laurie List action and expose this sort of deceit and abuse of power. If Officer Allie had seen someone as drunk as he claims, why did he not notify any of the on duty police officers there, as this was a family event?
Everything I have written to you about is backed by evidence and is on file in my attorney’s office. I have text correspondence about Dirth’s visits to the Yerry’s, evidence about Zaino being “reassigned,” everything I have written about. If there are any questions you may have, I am more than willing to answer them. I don’t have my files in hand to send to you, but I can get anything you may be interested in.
As you can see, there was plenty of “behind the scenes” action going on in my case. Very heartbreaking and unbelievable deceit and abuse of power. No family deserves to be treated the way the Yerry’s were. They lost a son and a brother. I lost a best friend. I was honest since day one and we all thought the authorities would be as well. We were wrong. As I said before, the reason I am sending this after my hearing is because I am not looking for a pardon. I am however open to relief if any is warranted. If not, that is fine too. I’m here to take responsibility for my actions. But I do not feel that an excessive sentence for doing the right thing and telling the truth because the authorities we trust refused to is justifiable. I should not have had to do this. They should have been honest since day one like me.
I wrote this because there are two sides to every story. My side the state would like to forget. Rockingham County is under scrutiny already. Reams and Reid are at the forefront. They had everything to do with my case as well. Corruptness, deceit, betraying the public trust, and abuse of power starts from the top. It’s quite clear it trickles down, or at least did in my case. This letter is for all the citizens and families of our wonderful state of New Hampshire – citizens and families that don’t expect to be lied to, especially when they lose their loved ones. When the personal agendas of the people we put our trust in means more to them than upholding the law and protecting the peace, we have a serious problem.
I have mailed this to a dear friend of mine who I trust and love. I have asked him to type and email it to you on my behalf. You can feel free to correspond with him and he can relay any questions you might have. I’m not sure where my sentencing will land me at this time. I’ll be sentenced to either NH State Prison or Rockingham County. Either way, I’m open to questions or discussion. I am also planning on sending this letter to other sources as well. They include WMUR, MADD, Copblock.org, NHCLU, and Governor Hassan. There are two sides to every story. I put my trust in your moral and journalistic integrity.
So mote it be-