A former Harwood Union High School janitor who is accused of writing a threatening message is now allowed to come closer to the school than he was before.

Dick Peck, 51, of Duxbury is facing misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct and raising a false alarm in connection with an incident in which he allegedly wrote “I am going to kill you all” in soap on a restroom mirror.

The message was found in early December. When Peck was arraigned in Washington County Superior Court, Judge Mary Miles Teachout set his bail at $2,500 and issued a host of conditions of release. Among them: Having no contact with students, faculty or staff, maintaining a 24-hour curfew in his home except for legal and medical appointments, and staying at least 300 feet away the school.

The judge has amended the last condition, allowing Peck to “travel on public roads within 300 feet of Harwood Union High School and/or Washington West Supervisory Union property specifically for work purposes.”

The change came after a motion by Peck’s lawyer, Robert Sheftman. Rory Thibault, Washington County’s state’s attorney, did not object to the change in conditions.

Peck lives on Stevens Brook Road, just off Route 100 and 3 miles north of the school. Previously, the conditions prevented him from traveling south on Route 100 past the school.

Court records do not state if Peck is working, where he is working, or what he is doing. A call to Peck’s lawyer was not returned by deadline.

All of Peck’s other conditions of release remain in place; he may not enter school property or have contact with students, faculty or staff.

The alleged incident

According to court records, on Dec. 4, Peck told school officials of a threatening message written in soap across two mirrors in the boys’ restroom near the science classroom.

Peck told police he saw the message when he went in to clean; however, surveillance footage shows him entering the restroom twice — once for one minute and again for two minutes, and in neither case was he carrying cleaning supplies, court records state.

When confronted with the inconsistency, Peck admitted writing at least part of the message himself, the affidavit states.

According to the police report, Peck said the words “I go kill you” were written in soap on the mirror, and he added additional words to form the message. Police asked Peck why he did it.

“I have no clue,” Peck said, according to the affidavit. “They never take anything serious around here. You know, you go tell them things and they don’t take things serious around this school. They don’t listen to the custodians. They act like we’re stupid.”

Going forward

Superintendent Brigid Nease said she was notified of the change in conditions. As for whether she is concerned with the change, she wrote in an email, “Any safety concerns I may have had prior to the change remain the same. They have not changed.”

Email is the only method by which Nease will communicate with the press.

On May 1, the court had scheduled a jury draw for Peck’s trial. However, On April 29, Judge Morrissey canceled the jury draw after granting a request from Peck’s lawyer for a competency and sanity evaluation. Court records do not reveal if the evaluation has been done.

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