By Andrea Estes, Globe Staff The newly appointed interim head of the state gaming commissionabruptly resigned Wednesday night, saying that the growingdistractions created by allegations of sexual abuse against himhad made it impossible to be effective in the job. In a message to the board, Carl Stanley McGee said that aftermuch personal thought he decided to step down to let thecommission get on with the important public business of jobcreation and economic development it was created to perform. Board chairman Stephen Crosby, who had staunchly defended McGee sappointment as interim executive director and had called the 2007abuse allegations meritless and warrantless, saidWednesday night that he agreed with McGee s decision. He cited McGee s substantial knowledge and expertise ingaming and policy making and his reputation among his peers, butconcluded that his serving in this role would impede thecommission s ability to accomplish its mission.
McGee is expected to return to his job as assistant secretary forpolicy and planning in the Patrick administration. The resignation by McGee capped a day of mounting criticism overthe decision by the board to offer him the job without thoroughlyinvestigating the abuse allegations. Only in its infancy, the state s gaming commission has been besetby controversy. It has been criticized for its slow and methodicalpace.
Now, after the commission made the hiring of McGee its firstmajor decision, lawmakers are questioning whether the panel willproperly vet potential employees in an industry that depends onpublic confidence. Earlier Wednesday, State Treasurer Steve Grossman had called onMcGee to resign, saying he was so compromised by the allegations hecould not perform his job effectively. We ve got 15,000 jobs and hundreds of millions of revenue atstake in the gaming industry, said Grossman, who appoints oneof the five commission members. He said that before offering McGeethe job the commission should have painstakingly investigated hisbackground. Hitachi Diagnostic Tool
He noted that commission members themselves wereinvestigated before they were chosen for their positions. Also Wednesday, House Republicans, led by Daniel Winslow ofNorfolk, hired a retired State Police detective to investigate thesexual abuse allegations against McGee, who was accused ofassaulting a 15-year-old boy in the steam room of a Florida resortin 2007. McGee was arrested at the time, but Florida prosecutorseventually declined to press charges. The boy s family filed a civil suit, and McGee paid the family tosettle the case. Terms of the agreement are confidential. China Bmw Car Keys
It s unacceptable and inexcusable for a basic due diligenceinvestigation not to be completed before engaging a seniorexecutive in such a sensitive position, said Winslow, a formerdistrict court judge. That these allegations involve thealleged molestation of a child make the need for investigation allthe more important. Winslow said he would pay for the investigator, retired StatePolice Lieutenant Inspector Bob Long, out of his political campaignaccount and also seek donations from the public through a website,duediligencefund.com, set up for the purpose. Grossman and Winslow s comments were part of a growing controversyover McGee s appointment, including protests from advocates forchild sex abuse victims and a vote by the Massachusetts House ofRepresentatives Wednesday requiring the commission to conductbackground checks on all hires. The possibility that McGee, who started work on Monday, would notremain in the job surfaced Wednesday afternoon. China Car Key Cutting Machines
A spokeswoman forthe commission hinted the agency might hold up the appointmentwhile it conducts a background check on McGee — even though Crosbyhas previously said that he and other board members had looked intoMcGee s record and found it pristine. The spokeswoman, Karen Schwartzman did not return messages from theGlobe, but she told New England Cable News host Jim Braude that after voting to extend an offer to Mr. McGee, the vote madeclear that it was subject to passing a background check. … Thebackground check for Mr.
McGee is under way and is not completeyet. Mr. McGee won t be on the commission payroll until such timeas the background check is complete. In appointing McGee last week, Crosby said the charges had been investigated six ways from Sunday and were false. He went through this horrendous experience of being accused ofa sexual harassment charge several years ago in Florida he toldcolleagues before they voted to name McGee the agency s interimexecutive director on May 1.
Later, Crosby acknowledged he conducted no independentinvestigation, relying on news reports that the prosecutor haddeclined to bring charges because of a lack of DNA or othercorroborating evidence. Crosby also cited a review by the governor s office a reviewthat did not take place. Administration officials have acknowledgedthey never investigated the allegations, allowing McGee to returnto his job in the administration because no criminal charges werefiled. The teenager was vacationing with his family at an upscale GulfCoast resort in December of 2007 when the alleged assault occurred.Law enforcement officials in Florida said they believed the storyof the alleged victim, who was 15, and had urged the localprosecutor to bring charges against McGee.
They described theteenager as scared, but credible, providing consistent accounts toinvestigators. A police officer who investigated the case said he did not know whycharges were never brought. Somewhere between Massachusetts andFlorida … I don t know what happened.
It s above my paygrade, he said. After the prosecutor declined to bring charges, the boy s parentscomplained to the Florida governor s office. An investigator forthe Florida Department of Law Enforcement subsequently recommendedthat the prosecutor reconsider the charge of sexual battery on achild under 16 and add a second charge of lewd and lascivious actsupon a child under 16. Again the prosecutor decided not to bring charges. Mark Arsenault and Martin Finucane of the Globe Staff contributedto this report.
Andrea Estes can be reached@estes at Globe.com.