Ex-Leominster council hopeful faces harass allegations
Posted in the Fitchburg Forum
Since: Feb 10
#1 Apr 5, 2014
LEOMINSTER -- A Leominster woman has been granted a yearlong harassment-prevention order against 19-year-old Steve Cote, who ran an unsuccessful City Council campaign last year.
Cote, of 45 Mount Pleasant St., ran for an at-large seat on the council against incumbents John Dombrowski, Claire Freda and James Lanciani Jr., and fellow newcomer Charles Milhans.
Former Ward 4 City Councilor Robert Salvatelli also ran for an at-large seat.
Cote was very visible during his council run, walking up and down streets in downtown Leominster with his campaign sign.
In an affidavit signed by the woman, dated March 19, she said she asked Cote repeatedly to stop contacting her on Facebook and said he had been contacting her multiple times, asking her who she voted for in the election.
"He began contacting me after I said it was none of his business who I voted for," she wrote. "From there on I have received numerous messages from Mr. Cote. I have asked him several times that he not contact me."
She said she blocked Cote on Facebook, which would prevent him from contacting her, but she claims he had other accounts and he began sending her messages through those accounts.
The woman said she went to the Police Department on several occasions and spoke with Officer Kyle Mimnaugh, who told Cote he was to have no contact with her.
The woman said Cote "did not take Officer Mimnaugh's orders" because she received seven messages from him after that, one from his personal account and the other six from various alias accounts.
According to the order, issued by Judge Mark E. Noonan, Cote is "not to make any comments regarding the plaintiff on Facebook or any text, social media or electronic device in his name or other names."
Additionally, he was ordered not to abuse the woman, to stay at least 100 yards from the woman if they are in the same place, regardless of whether she requests or allows contact, and to stay away from her home and workplace.
The order will remain in effect until March 27, 2015.
Cote declined to comment on the harassment order Thursday when reached at his home, saying if he did, he could be found in violation of the order and arrested.
However, his father, Bob Cote, said his son was defending himself against a number of people who had been verbally harassing him on the social-networking site.
He said much of the interaction between his son and the woman was through a Facebook page called Leominster Uncensored, which he believed the woman is the administrator of.
Since: Feb 10
#2 Apr 5, 2014
"She has an open media page. If she and other people are going to say things on there that aren't nice about people, they need to be ready to get it back from that person," Bob Cote said. "My son has never done anything wrong. This is nothing but a political attack against him."
During his hearing earlier this week, Steve Cote was temporarily detained in a holding cell in the basement of the courthouse after Noonan ordered him held on a contempt charge because he attempted to interrupted the woman as she provided testimony.
Once he was brought back in to the courtroom, the charge was dismissed, Bob Cote said.
"My son is well known throughout the city. He volunteers, he helps people and goes out of his way for this city," Bob Cote said. "He's never had a problem with anyone in this city. When he tried to defend himself, she took him to court."
Cote, who ran as an independent, plans to run for the council again next year, and his father believes this harassment prevention order is nothing more than his opponents trying to dig up dirt they can use against him during the election.
Bob Cote said his son was wrong when he spoke out of turn during court, but that overall, he's a high-school student looking to be a positive influence in the city.
"This should never have gone to court. He's an excellent kid. He cares about so many people," his father said. "He's trying to make a difference. He's trying to model himself after JFK."
The pair plan to monitor the Facebook page and plan to bring any new comments made about Steve Cote to police.
"He doesn't agitate people. He just tries to defend himself. We're good people. He's never had problems like this before," Bob Cote said.
Since: Feb 10
#3 Apr 5, 2014
Looks like Leominster has one too. Is this why Fitchburg and Leominster are often referred to as the Twin Cities?
#4 Apr 5, 2014
Many new allegations coming in the burg and univ. MCAD beware
#5 Apr 5, 2014
I checked out the kids Facebook and yeah he's pushing about an 8 on the Lynch meter.
#6 Apr 5, 2014
You mean Stamos?
#7 Apr 17, 2014
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