FALMOUTH, Mass.- A former police officer who fled town after he was shot in the face 26 years ago returned to confront officials about concealing a 2003 police report about his attack.
John Busby was shot in the jaw by someone in a passing car on his way to work the night shift in 1979.
A police report obtained recently by The Cape Cod Times said that John Reine told police two years ago that he drove the car while his brother, businessman Melvin Reine Sr., shot Busby. Reine Sr., the owner of a local trash-hauling business who was a suspect in several criminal investigations, was long thought to be involved. Reine Sr. is now 66 and institutionalized with dementia.
Busby, who showed up unannounced at the board of selectmen's meeting Monday, has difficulty speaking because of his injuries, so former Falmouth police officer James Fagan spoke for him. Fagan urged the board to release the report, noting that crime victims are entitled to police reports 48 hours after an incident.
"How long does (Busby) have to wait?" Fagan said.
Over the decades, Reine has been convicted of arson and questioned in one slaying and in the 1971 disappearance of his then-wife. Busby thought Reine might have been involved in his shooting because he had a run-in with Reine's son.
Reine's current wife, Shirley, was found shot to death in her garage in May just as a trial involving a family legal dispute was about to start. According to the 2003 police report, John Reine said she was in the car at the time Busby was shot a quarter-century ago.
Police Chief David Cusolito, on orders from the local prosecutor, has refused to release the report because of the ongoing investigation into Shirley Reine's death, and the selectmen have decided not to press them for it.
The statute of limitations on the attack on Busby expired in 1989.
After the meeting, Busby's friends said they weren't satisfied with the selectmen's response, and noted Busby asked for the report before Shirley Reine was slain.
"If the statute of limitations had run out, why didn't they release it then?" said Rufino Gonsalves, a retired Falmouth police officer.
The lawsuit that was about to go to trial pitted his wife and his sons. The sons alleged that their father was not competent when he signed over his business and property to their stepmother.
A message seeking comment was left for Frederick Mycock, an attorney who has represented Melvin Reine Sr. in the past.