Assumpico Cites Dissatisfaction With Parts Of The 38 Studios Investigation

Mar 8, 2017

Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

State Police Col. Ann Assumpico expressed dissatisfaction Wednesday with how parts of the 38 Studios investigation were conducted.

State Police released a series of documents from their probe last week. Assumpico said she was responding to questions raised in the aftermath of that.

"There are questions as to why we released the statements of some members of the General Assembly and not others who were interviewed," she said. "I learned we initially taped and transcribed every interview. Those are the statements you saw last week. But at some point the investigators were told by members of the former administration that taping these interviews was not necessary. Investigators instead summarized in one statement, which was in the material released last week. We have no further records of any of those interviews."

Assumpico was appointed to lead the State Police last November, months after her predecessor, Steven O'Donnell, and Attorney General Peter Kilmartin announced that a multi-year probe failed to produce any criminal charges related to 38 Studios.

Lt. Col. Joseph Philbin, who joined Assumpico at her news conference, said, "Unfortunately, we can't comment on who in the previous administration told the investigators to do that. We just want that out there that it was under the orders of the previous administration, and certain people have been spoken to already."

O'Donnell didn't immediately respond to messages seeking comment.

In response to questions about why former House Speaker Gordon Fox, his predecessor and lawyer, William Murphy, and credit broker Michael Corso were not interviewed by State Police, Assumpico said they had a legal right to decline an interview. She said she could not indicate whether any of them were subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury.

The grand jury records remain closed, although Governor Gina Raimondo has requested their release.

Assumpico said there was no record of a recorded interview with Kilmartin, a longtime former lawmaker who served in the House at the time when the jobs program used to attract 38 Studios was approved in 2010, although Philbin said a record of Kilmartin's responses was included in the documents released last week.

Assumpico said her concerns about the investigation include how some interviews were not recorded and some interviews were done over the phone, rather than in person.

"I can tell you that’s not the way I expect investigations to be handled under my command," Assumpico said during a Statehouse news conference. "These are just some of the questions that have come out in recent days. And again, I’m still trying to find answers myself. I’m as bothered by all of this as you are."

Assumpico said she staged the news conference at the Statehouse because she needed to be there for an International Women's Day event.

Assumpico said she has no plans to reopen the probe into 38 Studios, despite her concerns about how the investigation was done.