A former Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Police officer, who allegedly sexually assaulted two women while on duty, was indicted Thursday (May 21).

The incident came to light in August last year when one of the victims, who was a candidate for a law enforcement job, spoke about the incident while answering questions. An investigation was launched following which the officer, identified as 46-year-old Shawn McCarthy, was placed on administrative leave in December. The 19-year department veteran resigned soon afterward.

According to a statement from the office of Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins, the incident took place in July 2012. The accused encountered the two women outside the Aquarium subway station and offered them a “joyride” in his marked police cruiser.

“After stopping in a vacant lot so the women could relieve themselves, McCarthy said he hadn’t risked his job for nothing and he would not take them back downtown until he got something out of it. The women stated that they feared getting in trouble and had no choice but to submit as McCarthy subjected them to sexual acts,” the statement said. The victims were in their early 20s at the time of the incident.

Following the alleged assault, the officer drove them back to the subway station and “warned them not to tell anyone about the episode.”

He was arraigned on rape charges Thursday and was released on the conditions that he will have no contact with the victims. He was also ordered to obtain permission before leaving the state.

Speaking about the incident, Rollins said, “It takes great courage for survivors in a case like this to come forward. Members of law enforcement are held to a higher standard of conduct because the public’s trust in them is vital. Victims turn to police in the aftermath of a crime and police turn the community to help solve crime. When a member of any law enforcement agency commits such a horrendous act, it erodes the community’s confidence in law enforcement as a whole."

"When law enforcement asks for the community’s help in solving crime, we and the police must be trusted. My office intends to hold this individual accountable as part of our efforts to rebuild the community’s trust in this noble profession.”

MBTA
A view of MBTA South Station in Boston, Massachusetts, on March 29, 2020. Maddie Meyer/Getty Images
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